Holiday Gatherings Bring Risk of Dog Bite Injuries in New Jersey

Dog HomeThe holidays can be wonderful for us, our families and our pets.  For dogs, the holidays can also bring stress, excess noise, extra people and changes in their normal routine.  A stressed out dog has the potential to make someone a dog bite victim in New Jersey.  According to the U.S. Postal Service, December is a peak time for dog bites and dog-related injuries, with children out of school for winter break and mail carriers delivering a higher volume of mail and holiday packages.

Supervision of pets and children at a family gathering can be lacking if everyone thinks someone else is keeping an eye on the dog and the kids.  A plan may be needed to keep everyone safe while large crowds are around.  The best action would be to put the dog in a safe secure place far away from the noise and confusion.  If your dog is crate trained that would be the perfect spot, with a nice big bone of course!

Look for Common Signs of Stress in a Dog During a Gathering

If that is not an option, an adult should be assigned to watch the dog.  The goal here would be to ensure safe interaction between children and the family pet and to look for signs of stress in the dog.  If at any point your dog is exhibiting stressed out behavior, they likely want to be left alone and should be removed from the gathering.  Here are some common signs of stress a dog may display under these uncomfortable circumstances:

  • Growling, barking, whining, cowering, drooling or pacing
  • Yawning, panting with the tip of the tongue cupped or licking lips
  • Backing away, hiding under furniture or behind its owner
  • Trembling, shivering or shaking (like what they would do after a bath)

Remind your children when visiting family and friends with a dog to leave the dog alone.  Explain to them that all the people and excitement will make the dog afraid and the dog might act out of character.  A provoked dog can be unpredictable and result in serious injury.

Contact a Dog Bite Attorney if Injured at a Holiday Party

If you or a family member suffer a serious dog bite accident this holiday season, Villani & DeLuca’s experienced dog bite lawyers are here to help.  Contact us toll free for a free initial dog bite consultation at (732) 965-3350 after seeking immediate medical attention.