Turns out, you’re not the only person some of your veterinary patients take a nip at from time to time. According to the Insurance Information Institute, dog attacks accounted for more than one-third of all homeowners insurance liability claims paid out in 2010, costing nearly $413 million. State Farm reportedly paid more than $90 million as a result of the nearly 3,500 dog bite claims in 2010. Here’s a list of the top 10 states for dog bite claims in State Farm processed in 2010:
Not only were California and Ohio in the top three with the most insurance claims, but San Diego, Calif., and Columbus, Ohio also prove to be the top two most hazardous cities for U.S. postal workers when it comes to dog bites. In San Diego and Columbus, dogs bit 45 postal workers in the last year and they bit 44 postal workers in Los Angeles.
Don’t become a statistic—or let your clients become one. Here are five dog-bite prevention tips that will help keep you safe outside the clinic:
- Don’t run past a dog. The dog’s natural instinct is to chase and catch you.
- If a dog threatens you, don’t scream. Avoid eye contact. Try to remain motionless until the dog leaves, then back away slowly until the dog is out of sight.
- Don’t approach a strange dog, especially one that’s tethered or confined.
- Before you pet a dog, always obtain permission from the owner and let the dog see and sniff you first.
- If you believe a dog is about to attack you, try to place something between yourself and the dog, such as a backpack or a bicycle.
Click here for more ways to protect yourself and your clients from dog bites.