A dog can be a faithful and trustworthy companion, but it could also be a real source of personal risk. Dogs of any size and breed could eventually become aggressive with little provocation and leave a human with severe injuries or emotional trauma, possibly both.
Some people who have suffered a dog bite struggle to feel safe around dogs in the future, even if they loved the animals before. Anyone who comes into close contact with a canine could potentially suffer a bite, but some people have far more statistical risk than others for a dog to attack and bite them.
Those with higher risk can help protect themselves by being more alert while around strange dogs and learning about how to identify possible signs of canine aggression. Who is at the highest risk of a dog bite attack?
Children account for a majority of annual dog bite incidents
According to statistics provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, children, especially those not yet old enough to go to school, have the highest risk of any group for a dog bite. Children are the victims of roughly 59% of dog bite attacks, and they are disproportionately represented among those who need medical care after a dog bite attack.
Dog bites against young children can cause worse wounds because the child cannot defend themselves and because their short stature allows a dog easier access to their throat or face. A dog bite incident may lead to lifelong trauma for the child.
What adult professions have a link with dog bites?
In 2019, the number of USPS employees attacked by dogs was 5,803, which was a marked decrease from the two previous years. However, with the boom in digital shopping recently, the statistics from 2020 and 2021 could show that bites are on the rise again because deliveries are.
In addition to postal workers, other delivery drivers, including those delivering meals and groceries, are also at elevated risk for a dog bite attack. So are landscapers and meter readers working for utility companies.
Recognizing your statistical risk can help you protect yourself and the people you love, like your young children. Knowing your rights if a dog bites you despite your best efforts to avoid an attack is also important for your safety and well-being.