Changing how kids and dogs interact, preventing one bite at a time

West Virginia

"We can keep our kids and the dogs safer just by being educated."

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. (WDVM) — Briggs Animal Adoption Center and the National Humane Education Society teamed up to host their Humane Heroes “Cool to Care” camp Tuesday morning.

The camp gave kids an opportunity to learn about different signs when animals are agitated, nervous or happy to help keep themselves and others safe around distressed animals.

“Animals are the same way as our families and friends, they have feelings and they want to communicate with us so they do that through their bodies,” said National Humane Education Society Educator Megan Hessenberger. “When we are aware and pick up on those cues that they’re giving to us, we create a safer environment with them.”

According to the Canine Journal, almost 4.6 million people are bitten each year by dogs and sometimes it’s due to not realizing when an animal is in distress. Common signs of a dog that might bite could be yawning while licking lips, growling, snapping or showing teeth, its body becoming rigid and its fur standing up.

“Don’t just run up on a dog if they’re feeling scared and try to pet them because they can react and they can bite but that doesn’t make them a bad dog, it just means we have to learn to be more responsible,” said National Humane Education Society Educator Hayley Miller. “I think if we start at a young age and teach them, we’re helping build a more humane community.”

The NHES teaches kids and adults across the country and hopes that local communities will make it a priority to increase everyone’s safety when it comes to animals.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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