Humane Society offers dog bite prevention programs

INDIAN RIVER COUNTY – School is nearly out which means that more children will be outdoors – and more likely to come into contact with dogs.

It’s estimated that over 4.7 million people are bitten by dogs each year and approximately half are children under the age of 12.

Because children are the leading victims of dog bites, The Humane Society of Vero Beach and Indian River County is offering free dog bite prevention programs to any organization that works with children including camps, churches and civic organizations.

Using puppets, storybooks and coloring activities, the program teaches children the fundamentals of learning how to safely interact with dogs including asking permission from an adult before petting a dog, putting the hand out slowly, not running when a strange dog approaches (“Stand like a tree”) and what to do if a dog knocks the child down (“Lay like a log”).

Programs geared to adults are available as well.

Children’s programs may be requested by contacting the Humane Society’s Education Department at (772) 388-3331 ext. 18.

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