800,000 people each year need medical care from dog
bites. Learn to respect Fido's nature and keep your
Your dog is a disaster waiting to happen.
Fido isn't exactly plotting revenge for too few
kibbles in the food bowl or an abbreviated walk. But
at their core, dogs are predators and pack animals,
and experts say canines' powerful instinctive
responses to things as innocent as a hug around the
neck can create dangerous situations for human
companions, especially unsupervised kids.
Dog-attack fatalities are rare, about a dozen per year
in the United States. The most recent in Colorado
occurred in Fruita last weekend, when Kate-Lynn Logel,
7, was mauled to death after she was left alone in her
yard with a pair of adult Alaskan malamutes her family
had adopted three weeks earlier.
"Who knows what happened?" says Windsor veterinarian
and Denver Post columnist Robin Downing. "It is
normal, natural dog behavior to establish a pecking
order. If there is a threat - real or imagined - to
the pecking order, that can be enough to trigger a
Some of the 4.7 million dog bites logged each year
might be avoided if humans would admit that dogs are
not four-legged people, animal behaviorists say.
This information was supplied by:
Denver Post Staff Writer