Every year my family participates in Halloween from our Modesto home. We also have a dog in our family so I wanted to post a blog entry about Halloween and dog safety. Halloween can be fun for kids and parents alike. Dressing up like ghosts, pirates, zombies as well as princesses or cowboys can be exciting. Halloween can make some dogs nervous and anxious. When dogs normally protect the home from intruders, the dog owner would applaud them. A family dog confronted by a masked child is a receipt for disaster. A well meaning dog trying to protect the owner by biting that masked stranger can be costly to the dog owner, especially when that masked stranger is an 8 year old child.
According to a 2011-2012 APPA National Pet Owners Survey 62% of U.S. households own a pet. Of those homes with pets, there are 46.3 million homes in the United States with a least one dog. The Centers for Disease Control reports that more than 4.7 million people are bitten by dogs each year. The CDC also reveals that of those 4.7 million people, 800,000 of them seek medical treatment for those bites and half of those seeking treatment are children. There are more than 386,000 people that require medical treatment in an emergency room from dog bite injuries. Sadly, 16 people die each year from dog bites in the United States. Children are the most at risk for injury, specifically those children between the ages of 5 to 9. About 2/3 of the injuries to children ages 4 and younger are to the head and neck region.