Deputies from the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office have taken reports from five citizens who have been bitten by dogs over the past six weeks. This number of dog bites is high in such a short period of time.
The youngest victim was a 9 year old boy and the oldest victim was 46 years old. Injuries ranged from a Band-Aid to a hospital visit for several sutures. The dogs responsible for the bites were a Golden Lab, Mixed Breed, Pit Bull, Jack Russell, and Golden Lab/Golden Retriever mix. The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reminds dog owners that they can be held responsible both criminally and civilly when their dog bites someone.
Lewis County Ordinance 6.05.020 states: It shall be unlawful and a public nuisance for owners or keepers of any animal to permit their animal to:
(2) Snap, snarl, growl, bite, jump at or upon or otherwise threaten persons, or to chase, run after or jump at livestock, domestic animals or vehicles when such persons, livestock or vehicles are not on the property of the owner or keeper of the animal, or are upon the sidewalks, roads or public rights-of-way upon or adjacent to the property of the owner or keeper.
Owners are reminded to ensure their dog is secured and not allowed to wander freely into public spaces or other person’s property.
The Lewis County Animal Shelter would also like to remind dog owners to keep their dog current on rabies vaccination as well as those recommended by your veterinarian.
Some dog bites are unexpected and unpreventable, but there are many tips to be aware of to prevent being bitten by a dog:
• Never approaching an unfamiliar dog, especially one who's tied or confined behind a fence or in a car.
• Don't pet a dog—even your own—without letting him see and sniff you first.
• Never turn your back to a dog and run away. A dog's natural instinct will be to chase and catch you.
• Don't disturb a dog while it is sleeping, eating, chewing on a toy, or caring for puppies.
• Watch young children very closely when they are around dogs.
• Be cautious around stray dogs.