Small dogs have been popular throughout history; think Toto from the Wizard of Oz, Boo the Pomeranian and the Queen’s corgis, to name a few but figures seem to show that they have never been as popular as now with dog owners opting for a small dog breed when looking to get their next family pet. After all they’re cute, cuddly and soft, right? Well not necessarily. Any dog no matter the breed or size has the ability to bite and cause injury.
The Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) has stated that the small dog trend is fueling the number of people attending hospital for a dog bite. The RCS is warning that owners may not be aware of how aggressive a small dog can be.
There has been a year on year increase of people visiting hospitals for dog related injury with a whopping 23,000 over the past 3 years.
The RCS have credited the rise to the increase in sales of smaller dogs because their owners do not realise the “significant damage” that their furry friend is capable of causing. Last year there was a leap in the sales of French Bull Dogs, just under 40,000, as such this small breed has beaten the Labrador as the UK’s most popular breed of dog, 3 years on the trot.
A member of the RCS who regularly treats dog bites has confirmed she has seen firsthand the surge in the number of dog related injuries raising from “fairly minor to life changing”.
One sector of society vulnerable to injury from the small dog breed are children, especially babies. Young children are often bitten on the face, suffering nasty lacerations and puncture wounds, often requiring surgery.
Whilst larger breeds of dogs can cause significant injury so can the smaller breeds, and it is not just always a straightforward bite. It is quite common for open wounds such as dog bites to become infected and then further complications can follow.
So, should small dogs be avoided? No, we simply advise that you try to stay as safe around dogs as possible whether it be a little Toy Poodle or a Great Dane.
At dogbitesolicitors we have seen some horrific injuries caused by small dogs. Terriers such as Jack Russell’s have a tendency to bite, hang on and to shake their “prey”. If their prey is your fingers then that can cause serious injury with shredded skin, nerves, muscles and tissue. It is because of the nature of these injuries that some of the largest sums of dog bite claims compensation we have recovered have been as a result of injuries caused by “small dogs”.
If you unlucky enough to have been the victim of a dog bite, no matter the breed of the dog, then feel free to contact our specialist dog bite team.