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Dog bites in US are reaching epidemic proportions says trainer

Published on May 16, 2014 1:26 AM
 

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Dog bites are reaching "epidemic proportions," a well-known TV dog trainer said Thursday, as video of a cat fearlessly chasing off a dog that bit a small boy in California went viral.

Every year more than 4.5 million Americans - more than half of them children - are bitten by dogs, said the American Humane Association ahead of National Dog Bite Prevention Week, which begins Sunday.

Insurers paid more than US$483 million (S$603 million) in dog bite claims in 2013. Plastic surgeons performed 26,935 operations to repair injuries caused by dog bites. And the US Postal Service said 5,581 of its employees were attacked last year.

"The dog bite situation in America is at epidemic proportions - in Europe less so, but still a huge issue," British-born dog trainer and television presenter Victoria Stilwell, host of the reality series "It's Me or the Dog," told AFP.

 
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