Keeping children safe around dogs - what you can do
Psychology researchers at Lincoln University are looking for 200 dog-owning families in the East Midlands or the east of England with one or more children aged three to six to participate in a new bite-prevention study. Participating families will be asked to use interactive software to teach children how to stay safe around dogs.
The Blue Dog CD features a series of animated situations and games involving a dog and a child, offering safe and unsafe outcomes. Parents will be asked to fill in a questionnaire and then film their child interacting with their pet dog at a few intervals over the course of a year.
'Children under six are most at risk of being bitten so we need to teach them early on about how to interact with dogs,' explains research fellow Dr Lakestani. 'It's not only about child safety, it's also about animal welfare, as dogs that bite children are often abandoned or put down.'
For more details on the two-year study, or to express an interest in taking part, visit Lincoln University's Blue Dog website.