Local animal trainer provides insight on increase in dog bites and attacks

Published: May. 12, 2022 at 5:38 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - According to the Cedar Rapids police calls for service database, they responded to more than 100 dog attacks or dog bites since the start of 2020.

Nationally, according to the CDC, approximately 4.5 million dog bites have occurred in the United States last year alone.

“Every dog can bite. Even the cutest, fluffiest, most snuggly little thing,” said Laura King, owner of King’s Creatures Animal Training.

She says there’s likely one main reason for the increase in dog bites since the pandemic: dog socialization.

“Really it needs to be a lot more structured than that and focus on introducing them in a positive way with training to new things. It doesn’t always have to be people and pets. In fact, I always try to leave that for a little later,” King told TV-9.

Lockdowns and public restrictions gave everyone a lot to growl about. When an animal isn’t used to being around other animals, small children, large groups of people, or all of the above they can react in an aggressive way when present in any number of situations.

King says we can sometimes predict an attack before a dog lunges towards someone or something, but in other cases there’s no advance notice.

“There are some dogs that I’ve run into that don’t necessarily show those signs. Maybe they go from 0 to biting with no warning signs,” she said.

The best way to get these numbers back down and avoid dog bites and attacks, is training and ensuring pets get that proper socialization.

“We have to look at what’s going on with that dog, why aren’t they giving us those indicators that they are uncomfortable before they jump right to biting.”

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