Bite Information (City Ordinance)
Every animal that bites a person shall report the incident to the Amarillo Animal Management & Welfare Department at 806-378-3092 or after hours, to the Police Department at 806-378-3038.
Quarantine (State Law and City Ordinance)
Any dog or cat that has bitten a person must be quarantined for a period of 10 days or the head submitted to a laboratory for pathological examination.
Amarillo Public Health Department
- Never approach an unfamiliar dog;
- Never run from a dog and scream;
- Stay still when an unfamiliar dog comes up to you;
- If knocked over by a dog, roll into a ball and lie still;
- Do not stare a dog in the eyes because it may view that as threatening;
- Do not disturb a dog that is sleeping, eating or caring for puppies;
- Do not pet a dog without letting it see and sniff you first;
- Do not ride your bicycle or run past a dog: Get off the bike and keep it between you and the dog. Back away slowly and do not run:
- Do not tease a dog, pull its ears or tail or squeeze it too hard;
- Use extreme caution when handling an injured dog.
Almost half of all dog bites are provoked, regardless of whether the victim is a child or an adult. The mistake is made when people view provocation from a human viewpoint rather than from the animal’s perspective.
Tips for New Dog Owners
- Canines are pack animals, and puppies should be trained to look to humans for leadership and avoid competition with children or other pets;
- Socialize the puppy to many different types of people;
- Puppy obedience classes offer great tips and socialization opportunities;
- Wrestling, and tug-of-war sometimes instill bad habits in dogs;
- Spaying or neutering the dog at a young age is most advantageous; (studies show that neutered animals are less likely to be aggressive);
- Teach children how to properly behave around animals and to be responsible pet owners.
Dogs bite almost 400,000 persons every year in Texas, and 60 percent of those victims are children. More than half of all children will be victims of a dog bite by the time they reach age 12. One-quarter of all persons bitten require medical care, and dogs whose owners thought their dogs would never bite inflict the most injures. Studies show that most victims of fatal dog bites are the very young and the very old.
Parents with New Babies
- Always supervise a young child around any dog, no matter how well known, friendly, or small that dog may be. A parent sleeping in the same room does not constitute supervision.
Lavish extra attention on the dog when a new baby is brought home. All too often the family housedog is relegated to the backyard when the new baby arrives. Encourage the dog to view the baby as a “good thing” by petting and talking to the dog while holding the baby.”