National Dog Bite Prevention Week, May 16-22, 2010

West Palm Beach, FL (PRWEB) May 11, 2010

During the third week in May, Doggone Safe Inc., Pet At Home Sitting Services, Inc., “Pet At Home,” and other organizations will be calling attention to one of the nation’s most commonly reported public health problems: dog bites. Half of all children will be bitten by a dog by age 12 and the majority of these bites are by the family dog or other dog known to the child.

Deedra Thompson of Pet At Home Sitting Services will be presenting the “Doggone Safe Be a Tree” children’s program on Tuesday, May 18 at 6:30 p.m. at

All Paws Animal Clinic, located at 1011 North State Rd 7, Royal Palm Beach in the Regal Cinema Plaza. Bring your child and learn to be a doggie detective. The class is catered to school age children and there is no charge for the class, but registration is required. Please call All Paws today at 561-790-9225 to reserve a space for your child. One parent is requested to accompany the child.

Doggone Safe, a non-profit organization dedicated to dog bite prevention through education offers free information at its website to help promote safety messages during dog bite prevention week. Doggone Safe also promotes the “Doggone Safe Be a Tree” children’s program. This program is a short presentation with large photos and lots of activities to teach children to understand the signs dogs send with their body language. The central message of this program is “Be a Tree”. That is, stand still if a strange dog approaches or any dog is threatening or overly frisky. Children learn to be doggie detectives, looking for the clues that dogs give with body language to show how they are feeling.

Doggone Safe and Pet At Home offer the following tips for parents and dog owners to help keep kids safe:

The 3 Most Important Things to Teach Your Kids

1.    Dogs Don’t Like Hugs and Kisses – Teach your kids not to hug or kiss a dog on the face. Hugging the family dog or face-to-face contact are common causes of bites to the face. Instead, teach kids to scratch the dog on the chest or the side of the neck.

2.    Be a Tree if a Strange Dog Approaches – Teach kids to stand still, like a tree. Trees are boring and the dog will eventually go away. This works for strange dogs and anytime the family dog gets too frisky or becomes aggressive.

3.    Never Tease a Dog – and never disturb a dog that’s sleeping, eating or protecting something.

The 2 Most Important Things Parents Can Do

1.    Supervise – Don’t assume your dog is good with kids. If a toddler must interact with your dog, you should have your hands on the dog too. Even if your dog is great with kids and has never bitten – why take a chance?

2.    Train the dog – Take your dog to obedience classes where positive-reinforcement is used. Never pin, shake, choke, hold the dog down or roll the dog over to teach it a lesson. Dogs treated this way are likely to turn their aggression on weaker family members. Involve older children in training the family dog while supervising. Don’t allow children to punish the dog. Condition the dog to enjoy the presence and actions of children using positive experiences.

The 3 Most Important Things Dog Owners can do

1.    Spay or Neuter Your Dog – Neutered pets are calmer, healthier and less likely to be aggressive. Neutering prevents unwanted dogs that may end up in shelters or in less than ideal conditions where they may grow up to be poorly socialized or aggressive.

2.    Condition Your Dog for the World – Give your puppy lots of new positive experiences. Train using positive methods i.e. clicker training.

3.    Supervise Your Dog – Supervise your dog at all times around children. Do not allow children to hug and kiss the dog. If visiting children are bothering your dog, put the dog away or send the children home.

About Pet At Home Sitting Services:

Pet At Home began serving pets in the community in January 2004 and is a family owned professional pet sitting service, insured, bonded, licensed and certified in Pet CPR and First Aid by the America Red Cross. Pet At Home is a proud member of NAPPS, the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters and PSI, Pet Sitters International. They offer professional pet sitting service to pet owners who want their pets treated like members of their family. Beginning a pet sitting service was second nature for the owner and President Deedra Thompson coming from a family that owned and operated a small zoo in Austin, Texas. “Pets are my passion,” and I take the responsibility of caring for them and the security of my client’s home very seriously commented Deedra Thompson. I chose to teach the “Be A Tree” program to protect children from being hurt and to protect our canine friends from being in situations that would cause them to bite. To learn more about Pet At Home Sitting Services, Inc. or to schedule the “Be A Tree” program for a school age group or organization in the West Palm Beach area please call 561-686-2900 or visit its website at

About All Paws Animal Clinic:

All Paws Animal Clinic opened for business in July 2002 and is owned and managed by Dr. Patricia Forsythe, Medical Director. All Paws has rapidly grown into a well-established and respected veterinary hospital. The clinic has been chosen “Best of the West” for veterinarian in 2005, 2007, 2008 and 2009 by the readers of the Wellington Forum. We are dedicated to our mission statement “Quality Care with Compassion for your Best Friend”. Visit us at!

About Doggone Safe Inc.:

The not-for-profit Doggone Safe organization’s mandate was based on jurors recommendations following an inquest into the mauling death of 8 year old Courtney Trempe in Ontario, Canada. Along with their many educational programs, Doggone Safe also provides victim support and administers the Courtney Trempe Memorial fund, in honor of her memory, to help provide trauma counseling (not provided by insurance) for child dog bite victims and their families. Visit



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