'Ruff' life after a dog bite

'Ruff' life after a dog bite

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, every year in the U.S. dogs bite an estimated 4.5 million people. One out of five of those required medical attention.

Even if your dog has never shown signs of aggression, it is still possible they will react with their teeth. Dog owner, Kaylee Johnston never expected her pup, Jax to bite someone.

"You just never know with dogs," Johnston said. "They can be the sweetest, kindest, gentle dog but things can set them of."

He was recently released from the Lubbock County Animal Shelter after biting a young boy while at her apartment's dog park.

"They went to the ER, just to get it looked at and checked out and they questioned the parents, oh what had happened and he said that there was a dog bite," Johnson said. "So from there, the animal control services, their thing is to go and get the dog." 

According to city ordinances, if a dog bite is reported, the animal will be impounded at least 10 days. During that time, the dog will be checked for rabies, micro-chipped, and seen by a behavioral therapist. The owners can provide food, toys, and clothing so the animal feels comfortable.

"You can always come up and bring extra stuff if you forgot something or you need to bring more food," Johnston said. "We called them a lot and at one point they said he wasn't eating so they were going to introduce wet food that they had, so they keep you up to date on what's going on." 

Now that Jax is back home, Johnston is reflecting on what led up to her dog's attack.

"Well he was trying to get away, well we thought Jax was running around, wanting to play with the little kid, but he was running and trying to get away," Johnston said.

She then downloaded an app called Dog Decoder. It helps explain the difference between aggression and assertive play.

"You can go over and teach yourself what you can do as a dog owner so that never happens again," Johnston said.

The app recommends leaving a dog alone if they have a tense body, pulled back ears, an intense stare, or are backing away and growling. 

Moving forward, Johnston plans to keep Jax away from kids and will be more cautious while he is interacting with strangers.

"Dogs don't go from zero to 100 like that," Johnston said. "There not just going to snap, like I said they give off warning signs."

If bitten by an animal, you can either call animal services directly or for serious maulings, call 9-1-1. On a second  offense, animal control will sterilize any non-sterilized dogs. 

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