Is There A Proper Way to Greet a Pet?

One of
pet owner’s worst nightmares is having ther
pet harm others, especially for
dog owners.
to The
Centers for Disease Control , 800,000 Americans recieve medical
attention for dog bites each year, among them half are children. However the
CDC says “Dog bites are a largely preventable health problem, and adults
and children can learn to reduce their chances of being bitten.”
goes on to explain that there is not a specific breeds that are most likely to
bite. There are various reasons a dog can be subject to biting. A few reasons
could include, if he’s scared, if he’s sick or hurt, if he feels trapped, or if
he’s bitten before and he knows if will make you back off. Unfortunately, it is
common for bites occur when people are approaching a dog they don’t know and
the introduction goes badly.
posting on Smarter You, Happier Dog by Lili Chin, works closely with a
veterinary behaviorist, Dr. Sophia Yin creating the poster
“How NOT to Greet a Dog.” Who shares greetings that are common sense and that many of
the ways we’ve learned to appropriately approach people we don’t know can also
be applied to dogs. The tips are good for adults to learn and to teach their
children as well.
Yin’s advice: 

1. Avoid
reaching into their safety zone.
people, this could be a table in a restaurant; with dogs, it could be a car.
Keep a safe distance so they will see you are not a threat.

2.  Avoid
rushing up
. Approach slowly and at a
relaxed pace. If a stranger came running up to you, wouldn’t you think they
want to do you harm?

3. Avoid
interactions without asking
. As
a pet owner, I don’t want a stranger coming up and petting my dog without
asking first. If my dog feels threatened and bites, guess who’s going to be
punished for it. Special caution should be exercised around dogs that are tied
up. Dogs have a “flight or fight” instinct, and if they can’t flee a
perceived threat, they may want to lash out by biting.

4. Avoid
Your mother taught you
it’s not polite to stare, right? It’s best to approach a dog sideways, using
your peripheral vision.

5.  Avoid “looming.” Leaning
over a dog might be perceived as threatening, especially for rescue dogs who
may have been abused. Even if you squat down to be on the dog’s level, avoid
looming over the dog as you stand up

6. Don’t
invade their personal space
. People
don’t like it, and neither do dogs. The best thing to do is to let the dog
approach you at his own pace.

7. Avoid close interaction
if the dog is afraid of you
. If you
approach a dog who appears nervous or tense, avoid petting him. This would seem
to be common sense, but some people think they can soothe the dog by petting it
when really they are just asking for trouble.

8.  Don’t squeal or shout in his face.

9. Don’t grab him and hug him, or grab his head and kiss it. This is considered an invasion of space, “Doing
this to a dog who doesn’t know you is like a perfect stranger giving you a
great big hug and kiss in an elevator. Wouldn’t that creep you out? And
wouldn’t you have the right to defend yourself?”

With a
little knowledge and some common sense, that strange dog you meet can become
your friend.
Do you
have any tips for better interaction between your pet and those they meet?
Share with us on our Facebook Page!

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