When you are injured by a dog, there are many problems that could arise. If the dog isn’t vaccinated, infections can lead to severe injuries like brain damage or death. For example, a rabies case that isn’t caught damages the nervous system and leads to death in almost all cases.
Although an owner is held legally responsible for his or her pets and the injuries and illnesses caused, the best course of action is to avoid dog bites all together. Why do dogs bite, though, when they otherwise seem friendly or even approached you without seeming aggressive?
There are some common reasons. One reason is that the dog is biting as a reaction to something you’re doing or that is going on around it. For example, if a dog is scared of thunder and is hiding, reaching for him could result in a bite to your hand or arm.
Dogs may bite if they aren’t feeling well, which is one of the concerns your medical provider may have after you get bitten. Rabies makes dogs more likely to bite, but other conditions can make them attack, too. Normally, pets who don’t feel well who have received vaccines bite only if they want to be left alone and aren’t receiving that respect during their illness. Pain can be a direct cause of biting.
Some dogs like to nip or bite when they play, and this is particularly common in small puppies and younger dogs. Many times, puppy bites are not harmful, but it’s important that owners stop that behavior early on. Avoid playing rough games with dogs, because they can bite if they become overly excited.
Source: American Veterinary Medical Association, “Why Do Dogs Bite?,” accessed May 27, 2016