NorthStar Pet: Dog Bite Awareness 24.7.365

May 17th through 23rd is Dog Bite Awareness week. 

I have come across knowledge of two situations just within the past few months, where a rescue dog was rehomed (a new client - these are people who were well-intentioned, but more in love with the idea of a family dog, having no knowledge of the realities; it was in the dog's best interest to be rehomed, and I applaud them for seeing that), and a dog was unnecessarily euthanized without a second thought (a story about the family member of a neighbor of a client - sometimes people tell me things I wish I'd never heard, because I can't unhear something) because of a dog bite. Both circumstances escalated because of the pet owners lack of understanding of dogs - dogs as family members and the effort that comes with that, that dogs are not humans, and understanding dog energy, point-of-view, physiology, proxemics, and body language.   

Bringing a dog into a family is more than just a cool idea - you become the guardian of that animal for life - two species who share an environment. 

Every member of the family needs to understand the pets they share a household with.

Having a pet is an enriching experience that cannot be phoned in. It just takes some effort, education, respect... and love.

(Image courtesy of the AVMA on Pinterest.)