If you are near a neighbour’s dog or a friend’s dog, always ask the person in charge if you can pet it before you play with it. Always let a dog see you and smell you before you touch it, even if it is your own dog. Dogs get to know people, places and things by how they smell. It is one way that they learn. Be careful not to poke the dog in the nose, mouth, ears or eyes. Do not grab the dog’s tail, and never hit the dog. It is best never to hug a dog. It may make them feel like you are holding them down and that can frighten them. Dogs don’t like to be stared at. Staring into their eyes is a way that dogs signal to each other that they are ready to fight.
Never corner, crowd, or stand over a dog. It can make them feel afraid and then they might get angry and try to bite you. Always let the dog see that it has a way out of the room or space. Never put your face close to a dog’s mouth. Never bother a dog when it is sleeping or eating. Some dogs will snatch a toy or food right out of your hand. Often dogs are just playing when they do this but you can’t always be sure so it is best to let them have what they want.
If a dog is walking without a person it is called a “stray”. This dog may be hurt or lost and is probably very afraid. If you are outside playing and a strange dog walks up to you: STAND STILL AND LET IT SMELL YOU.
Because dogs protect their place, never approach a dog that is tied up, and never poke your fingers at a dog through a fence. Never try to pet a dog through the window of a car. Never run away from a dog that is chasing you. Stop and stand still. If a dog jumps on you, fall to the ground, curl in a ball, and cover your head and neck with your arms and fists. Try to stop moving and do not scream or yell. Wait until someone comes to take the dog away or it walks away on its’ own.