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Description:This photograph depicts unknown mixed breed of dog who was in the process of receiving a bath from two small children. Note the docile, relaxed disposition of this pet, which is ideal when thinking about adding a canine family member, especially when small children are involved.

The CDC advises that you consider the following before you decide to own a dog:

- Consult with a professional (e.g., veterinarian, animal behaviorist, or responsible breeder) to learn about suitable breeds of dogs for your household.

- Dogs with histories of aggression are inappropriate in households with children.

- Be sensitive to cues that a child is fearful or apprehensive about a dog and, if so, delay acquiring a dog.

- Spend time with a dog before buying or adopting it. Use caution when bringing a dog into the home of an infant or toddler.
- Spay/neuter virtually all dogs (this frequently reduces aggressive tendencies).

- Never leave infants or young children alone with any dog.

- Do not play aggressive games with your dog (e.g., wrestling).

- Properly socialize and train any dog entering the household. Teach the dog submissive behaviors (e.g., rolling over to expose abdomen and relinquishing food without growling).

- Immediately seek professional advice (e.g., from veterinarians, animal behaviorists, or responsible breeders) if the dog develops aggressive or undesirable behaviors.

High Resolution: Click here for hi-resolution image (2.98 MB)
Content Providers(s):CDC/ James Gathany
Creation Date:2008
Photo Credit:James Gathany
Links:CDC - National Center for Zoonotic, Vector-Borne, and Enteric Diseases (ZVED); Health Pets Health People; Diseases from Dogs
CDC - National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Unintentional Injury Prevention; National Dog Bite Prevention Week
CDC Organization
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Copyright Restrictions:None - This image is in the public domain and thus free of any copyright restrictions. As a matter of courtesy we request that the content provider be credited and notified in any public or private usage of this image.