Dog behavior expert: Why family dogs attack - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Dog behavior expert: Why family dogs attack

Angie Wood/Dog Psychology 101 Angie Wood/Dog Psychology 101
ATLANTA (CBS46) -

A dog named Bumper at U.S. Canine in Buford barked and retreated in fear when our camera got too close. Dog expert Angie Woods said that happens a lot when dogs don't like or know how to respond to certain situations, things or children.

"It's almost always a nervous situation. When a dog retreats, backs up, puts their ears back, shows you fear or hesitation to a child, that should be a red flag," Woods said. "They are communicating to you they're not comfortable."

Woods was not as surprised, as some, to hear a family's pet of eight years in Fulton County attacked and killed their 2-year-old child.

"One question for me, was he socialized with children early on? Was he acclimated to them or was he nervous about them?" Woods said. "This is not a breed-specific problem, so I don't want people to think anti-pit bull dog sentiments."

Woods has been around dogs all her life. She said they are part of her DNA.

"My official training is in veterinary medicine, I spent 17 years in veterinary medicine. I really love to focus on the behavior side," Woods said.

Even with her experience, under no circumstance would Woods leave a child alone with one of her beloved four-legged friends.

"All dogs have teeth, any dog can bite. A child could just fall on a dog and an accidental bite could occur," Woods said. "We must never leave our children alone with a dog, no matter how much we trust them."

Victoria Stilwell is a dog behavior consultant. Her show It's Me or the Dog aired on Animal Planet for eight years.

"I help families live in harmony with their dogs," Stilwell said.

Stilwell said many things could have triggered the family's dog to attack.

"Why now with just a 2-year old kid? Two-year old kids aren't really in control of themselves. You don't know if that kid fell over the dog, the dog was asleep, startled woke up and bit," Stilwell said.

Stilwell hopes those questions are answered before the dog is put down.

"It's so important that a case like this is properly investigated not just by the sheriff's department, but buy by people known as forensics K-9 bite investigators," Stilwell said.

Stilwell said the answer as to why the attack happened can be found with the family and their dog.

"It depends on bite placement, the history of this dog, interviewing the family and interviewing the neighbors," said Stilwell. "What happened before and just after the bite? We can get information about why."

While some might think this attack is breed specific, Stilwell said it's not. Some dogs do feel uncomfortable around children.

"Teach your child how to be around dogs. Keep your toddler or infant away from the dog. Always be there to actively supervise any interaction between them," Stilwell said.

Copyright 2013 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Hometown Hero - Edward Wilcox

    Thursday, July 20 2017 8:11 AM EDT2017-07-20 12:11:40 GMT
    Ed WilcoxEd Wilcox

    A DeQuincy businessman has the distinction of being one of the first National Guard members to represent his town. It had been five years since World War 2 and Ed Wilcox found himself serving his country in the National Guard.  Wilcox was too young to serve in the war, but felt the guard could keep him trained. "We went to training, Fort Polk and everywhere else," said Wilcox. "Learned to shoot. Learned how to walk. Laughs. How to march."  Wilcox becam...

    More >>

    A DeQuincy businessman has the distinction of being one of the first National Guard members to represent his town. It had been five years since World War 2 and Ed Wilcox found himself serving his country in the National Guard.  Wilcox was too young to serve in the war, but felt the guard could keep him trained. "We went to training, Fort Polk and everywhere else," said Wilcox. "Learned to shoot. Learned how to walk. Laughs. How to march."  Wilcox becam...

    More >>
  • UPDATE: Police identify man who died in Sulphur City Jail

    UPDATE: Police identify man who died in Sulphur City Jail

    Thursday, July 20 2017 7:21 AM EDT2017-07-20 11:21:04 GMT
    (Source: Dignity Memorial)(Source: Dignity Memorial)

    Police have confirmed a man died earlier this week inside the Sulphur City Jail. According to Mel Estess, spokesman for the Sulphur Police Department, the man was arrested Tuesday, put in a cell alone, and died. Police are not giving any word on how he died or releasing his identity. The coroner's report is not complete according to Estess. KPLC will update this story as more information becomes available. Copyright 2017 KPLC. All rights reserved.

    More >>

    Police have confirmed a man died earlier this week inside the Sulphur City Jail. According to Mel Estess, spokesman for the Sulphur Police Department, the man was arrested Tuesday, put in a cell alone, and died. Police are not giving any word on how he died or releasing his identity. The coroner's report is not complete according to Estess. KPLC will update this story as more information becomes available. Copyright 2017 KPLC. All rights reserved.

    More >>
  • What's Going Around: roseola

    What's Going Around: roseola

    Thursday, July 20 2017 6:56 AM EDT2017-07-20 10:56:57 GMT
    Roseola is a generally mild infection caused by two strains of herpes virus. (Source: KPLC)Roseola is a generally mild infection caused by two strains of herpes virus. (Source: KPLC)

    A common strain of the herpes virus is causing What's Going Around this week. KPLC's Britney Glaser reports almost every child will contract roseola at some point, and there is no treatment for the infection. 

    More >>

    A common strain of the herpes virus is causing What's Going Around this week. KPLC's Britney Glaser reports almost every child will contract roseola at some point, and there is no treatment for the infection. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly