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More dog bites reported in deprived areas

Posted by: Tim Berrisford  Date: 02/05/2014   Category: Latest News

The Health and Social Care Information Centre have released a report to show that dog bite attacks that result in hospital admissions are three times as high in the most deprived areas of England as in the least deprived areas.The area that has the highest rate across England is Merseyside as of figures from January 2013 to January 2014.

The figures from the HSCIC show that figures were up 6% since last year and all dog bites and injuries of this kind accounted for over 6,500 admissions, a shocking figure considering most of these were young children. However Dr Simon Harding, a lecturer in criminology at the University of Middlesex and author of Unleashed: The Phenomena of Status Dogs and Weapons Dogs, said he wasn’t “surprised” by the figures. He said, “Deprived areas are often more populous with larger families, more children, more pets and more people living in closer proximity to each other and dogs. Also dogs tend to be exercised in public, rather than in gardens or remote fields.

The HSCIC have provided information showing that the places with the highest admissions were deprived areas whilst less deprived areas had considerably lower admission figures. The areas with the highest rates are Merseyside, Durham and West Yorkshire. They are now trying to raise awareness as they believe dog bites and attacks are more common in the summer than in the other seasons and also that young children are most at risked of being injured through these type of attacks.

The Health and Social Care centre are urging parents to keep their children safe this summer to try to reduce the recent high levels of injuries caused by dogs. Please always supervise children of any age around dogs, even your family pet. If out in public keep an eye out for loose dogs or dogs on long leads that could approach your children. Currently the HSCIC are also compiling data on horses and other animals that will be available soon.