Dog Bite Statistics – Busting Myths And Dealing Out Facts: What Are They?
Dogs have been domesticated since ancient times. Dogs were used as hunting dogs, guard animals, companions and even pets. However, they are not considered pets anymore due to their tendency to attack humans when provoked or bored. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), there were approximately 25 million pet dogs in America in 1990. By 2010, the number had declined to 11 million. The reason for this decline is mostly due to a decrease in the number of households with children and an increase in single-parent families.
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) states that “the incidence of dog bites per 100,000 population was 2.6 in 1980; it decreased to 1.5 in 1995.” This means that from 1980 to 1995, the rate of dog bite injuries fell by almost half!
This is because of the fact that people are becoming more aware of their surroundings and using safety devices such as locking doors and keeping windows closed at night.
What About Pit Bulls?
According to the AVMA, “pit bulls” are a type of mixed breed dog which includes both Staffordshire Bull Terriers (which include Great Danes, Beagles, etc.) and American Bulldogs. They are a very strong and muscular animal, and were originally bred for fighting other animals in pit fights.
However, in recent years, many organizations have raised concerns about the dangers of pit bulls in America. Many people believe these dogs to be inherently dangerous. This is untrue.
All dogs have the ability to attack humans, but pit bulls have been bred to be aggressive and muscular since their early growth stages. This means that they are more likely to attack humans and other animals for fun or food. Still, only a small amount of pit bulls have bitten humans.
The Humane Society reports that “in 2009, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 4.7 people per 100,000 population were bitten by dogs. Of these bites, 0.006% resulted in human death.”
This means that human death resulting from dog bite injuries is extremely rare. In fact, the CDC states that “from 1998 to 2008, dog bites resulted in approximately 16 fatalities.” This is out of a population of 300 million people.
Pit bulls contributed to less than 1% of these deaths.
Do Pit Bull Attacks Ever Make the News?
Yes. Unfortunately, many pit bull attacks make national headlines. However, the media is not reliable when it comes to reporting the facts. Most of the time, they will only report the breed of dog, and not any other details. This is because not all reporters are animal experts. The media also has a tendency to run sensational headlines in order to get more people to read their newspaper or watch their news program.
How Do We Prevent Pit Bull Attacks?
The best way to prevent pit bull attacks is to educate people about dogs in general rather than banning pit bulls outright.
Sources & references used in this article:
Ebola myths and facts for dummies by C Rivers – 1996 – Columbia University Press
Like this by A Hutchinson – 2011 – McClelland & Stewart
Founding Myths: Stories that hide our patriotic past by EK Chapnick – 2014 – books.google.com
The Law Is a White Dog-How Legal Rituals Make and Unmake Persons by M Buster, KO Wood – sanaakosirickylee.wordpress.com
Don’t Swallow Your Gum!: Myths, Half-truths, and Outright Lies about Your Body and Health by R Raphael – 2014 – books.google.com