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Does Your Dog Bite?

Why do dogs bite?

It is important to understand why dogs bite so that we can protect ourselves and be aware of the circumstances that will cause a dog to attack. This will help you better manage a situation if you ever feel a dog is going to bite. Dogs will usually give a warning before they attack with their body language or by barking and backing away. 

1. Dogs Play Bite 

Dogs use their teeth as a way of catching on and playing with other dogs and you. They don’t understand their strength until they are told off. So, you need to make them aware if theyre putting too much pressure on you when play biting. 

2. Nervous Dog Bite  

If a dog is nervous or anxious about a situation or a person, this can cause them to bite in self-defense. It is natural instinct to attack if they feel threatened. Dogs have a great sixth sense of telling how someone is feeling and can smell fear which can make them nervous. The less fear you show the less likely a dog will bite. 

3. Protective Biting  

A dog can become very protective over its owner if it feels someone is a threat when they approach them and could attack. Dogs also are very territorial animals and if someone intrudes on their space this can upset them and cause them to lash out and bite. Always be careful about going up to a dog that is eating or is with their puppies, as they can become very protective especially over their food and young.

Protective Golden Retriever

Treating a dog bite

Minor Dog Bite   

  • Wash the bite wound under running water and clean with antiseptic 
  • Dry the dog bite and cover with a plaster 
  • Go to your GP for small dog bite wounds to get examined and avoid infection 
  • You may require a tetanus injection or antibiotics depending on whether the dog bite broke the skin.

Serious Dog Bite

  • Call an ambulance 
  • Put pressure on the dog bite wound with a clean cloth or dressing 
  • Lie down. If a limb is injured, raise the injured area above the level of the person's heart. This will help reduce blood flow. 
  • Don’t eat or drink anything 
  • Stay calm 
  • The first responder will know what to do once they arrive 

For more information on how to treat different bites visit the NHS and HSE websites. 

Always report a dog attack to the police and to the local authority for the incident to be investigated and the dog to be tested for diseases. 

Dog Bite Insurance

Your home insurance covers any legal cost if your dog is involved in an incident. Home insurance will cover domestic dogs but does not include breeds listed as dangerous dogs under the control of dog’s regulations. Ask your home insurance provider for more information about dog bite cover. 


Have you ever been bitten by a dog? 


Love from

the team at PawTrails

Dog Collar

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