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According to MSNBC and Reuters, even good dogs may bite, especially children. Children are particularly vulnerable to dog bites. Children are not experienced around animals, and may miss cues telling them to stay away from an animal. Children are also smaller, and a bite will inflict more damage on a tiny arm than a large one.

MSNBC reports that:

More than 4.7 million Americans are bitten by dogs each year, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. More than half of all dog bite victims are younger than 14 years of age and 150,000 of these bites are serious enough to require a visit to the emergency department

What you have heard about letting sleeping dogs lie is true. This also rings true for dogs that are eating and dogs that are caring for puppies. Dogs are more sensitive in certain situations, and in turn more likely to feel threatened. An animal that feels threatened is an animal that may bite.

The AAP says infants and small children should never be left alone with a dog and children should be taught to ask permission to pet someone’s dog and then avoid petting the dog’s face, head and tail. Dogs should not be “bothered” when sleeping, eating or caring for pups.

Sometimes, a dog attacks for no reason. An owner is responsible for making sure their dog is safe in normal situations. Dogs should not attack others for walking down their street, or jogging past them. If you or your child has been bitten by a dog that you did not provoke, you may be entitled to compensation from the dog owner for your injuries. If this has happened to you, you should contact a personal injury attorney immediately.

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