As designated by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), the week of May 17-May 23 marks National Dog Bite Prevention Week.
Dog bites remain a threat in our communities, to both people and companion animals. According to the AVMA, there are 4.5 million dog bites that take place in the United States every year. In 2014, 394 confirmed animal bites were reported to City of St. Louis Animal Care and Control.
Melba Moore, Acting Director/Commissioner of Health, who oversees Animal Care and Control, believes safety around pets and responsible pet ownership are important components of public health.
“Working to prevent animal bites is an opportunity for injury prevention in our communities, especially for young children,” says Moore. “We need pet owners to be responsible in properly restraining and containing their animals to prevent bites from occurring in the first place, and also to make sure rabies vaccinations are up-to-date in case a bite should occur.”
Citizens are encouraged to report aggressive or dangerous animals in the community. If you or someone you know experiences a dog bite, seek any necessary medical attention and then report the bite to the Citizen’s Service Bureau. Reports can be made to the Citizen’s Service Bureau at 314-622-4800, or on the web at http://www.stlouis-mo.gov/government/departments/public-safety/neighborhood-stabilization-office/citizens-service-bureau/.
For more information and additional resources on dog bites and prevention, please visit the AVMA website at https://www.avma.org/Events/pethealth/Pages/Dog-Bite-Prevention-Week.aspx.
For more information about the efforts of Animal Care and Control to prevent and address animal bites, contact Stacie Zellin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Department of Health
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