Ethics. Research. Community.

The ecology of dog bite injury in St. Louis, Missouri.

Public health reports (Washington, D.C. : 1974). 
1975 May-Jun
[Record Source: PubMed]
A detailed analysis of all the reported dog bites that occurred over a 2-year period in St. Louis, Mo., provided new insight not only into the severity of the problem, but also the environmental context for injury. Dog bite is a major medical problem that affects at least 1 of every 222 people and specifically 1 of every 83 children, 5 to 9 years old. Nearly 20 percent of all the children bitten were injured on the head or face, a source of concren and expense for all concerned. Nearly 10 percent of all bites were classified as serious. In only 25 percent of all injuries did the victim's behabior involve the dog at the time ofe victim interacting with the dog's owner. The victim was on the dog owner's property in about u9 percent of the incidents, and in about 48 percent of the cases the bite took pla-e near the owner's property. Bite incidents go up whenever the weather is conductive to street activity. More than 85 percent of all the biting dogs had owners. These results indicate that society's views of dog bite injury, which tend to minimize the problem and find fault with the victim, must be re-evaluated. It is time to place less emphasis on the victim and even the animal and review thae public health implications of dog ownership
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