Se habla español


Easy Tips on Preventing Dog Bites

Home » Easy Tips on Preventing Dog Bites
December 23, 2017
Edward Smith


Easy Tips on Preventing Dog Bites

The holiday season is when many people visit friends and relatives and entertain guests in their homes. This can be a stressful time for dogs living in these homes as unfamiliar people come and go, delivery men are ringing the doorbell, and some people are staying at the house. It can be confusing and stressful for the family dog. Taking a few precautions to protect guests is a good idea.

What Makes Your Dog Stressed

According to, dogs often give off signals that indicate it might be a good idea to stay away from them. Knowing those signals can help an adult avoid an injury.

  • Yawning or licking the lips
  • Being destructive (chewing pillows, etc.) when the dog wasn’t before
  • Refusing to leave the owner’s side
  • Becoming whiny, acting agitated, or barking
  • The dog acts listless or has no energy
  • The dog refuses to eat
  • Defecates or urinates indoors when this is abnormal behavior for the pet

Steps to Keep Visitors Safe

It’s always better to be safe than sorry when visitors are in the home. While some pets welcome the excitement of visitors, particularly family members, it can be too stressful for some.

  • If your dog shows signs of stress, remove the animal to a quiet area or crate. The owner can also keep the dog leashed and nearby.
  • Ensure an adult supervises the dog while the company is at the house.
  • The dog isn’t the only one who could benefit from supervision. If there are small children present, an adult needs to keep a watchful eye on them. This can help keep the children out of the dog’s way.
  • Spend some time with your dog before the company arrives. Going outside to play ball, going for a long walk, and reinforcing training is a good idea.
  • Dogs don’t necessarily like the same attention that people do. Many dogs dislike being hugged, so that may be an action to avoid. Tail pulling, leaning, or jumping on the dog and other similar actions are a no-no. Children should also understand how to avoid the dog’s toys or food. Some dogs are highly protective of their own things.

Dog Owners Are Liable for Injuries by Their Dogs

California Civil Code section 3342 states that a dog owner is responsible when his/her dog bites someone. This applies whether the bite occurs in a public place or on private property. Some exceptions may be made. For example, the owner may not be found liable if the individual bitten was provoking the animal at the time of the bite. Under Uccello v. Laudenslayer (1975) 44 Cal.App.3d 504, a landlord may be held liable if he/she was aware that a tenant’s dog was vicious. If the dog escaped and injured someone because the landlord failed to repair a broken gate that he/she knew about, the landlord could also be held liable.

Dog Bites in 2016 reports that 31 fatalities attributable to dog bites happened in 2016. Fifty-eight percent of the fatalities were adults aged 30 and over. Forty-two percent were youngsters aged 9 and under. California was the number one state for dog bite deaths in 2016, with six fatalities.

Sacramento Dog Bite Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento dog bite lawyer. The victim of a dog bite or other harm by a canine may result in severe injury and infection in some cases. If this happened to you or a family member, call me at (916) 921-6400 anytime or (800) 404-5400 if you are outside the Sacramento area. I am happy to offer you my friendly advice, and it’s free of charge. On, my website, you can also access an easy contact form.

Look over client reviews at Google, Yelp, and Avvo.

The page titled Verdicts and Settlements offers information about previous cases.

I am a Sacramento injury lawyer who has aided Northern California victims of auto, truck, motorcycle, and other personal injuries for the past 35 years. Working hard to obtain fair compensation for their traumatic injuries and wrongful deaths has been my privilege.

I belong to the Million Dollar Forum, a group of trial attorneys with verdicts and/or settlements of one million dollars.

Photo Attribution:

:cd [cs 747] cv