Dear Council Members,

I realize that dog bites have been portrayed as an increasing public safety hazard. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (NEISS data for 2003), mishaps involving dogs resulted in approximately the same number of emergency room treated injuries per year (~340,000) as mishaps involving ......TABLES!!!!*

*From: Dogs Bite, But Balloons and Slippers are More Dangerous. Janis Bradley, 2005. James & Kenneth Publishing, Berkeley, CA

I think we'll all agree there is no need to require owners of tables to have liability insurance. Perhaps, with a proper perspective, we can all agree that the same applies in the case of dogs that have exhibited no aggressive behavior, regardless of breed.

Sincerely,
Karen Brinkley


FOLLOW-UP:

Data from 10-15 year CDC sponsored studies reveal the following about RARE causes of deaths (annual average):
Annual deaths due to lightning:                    82
Annual deaths due to forklifts:                    68
Annual deaths due to dogs (all breeds):      16

Data from 10-15 year CDC sponsored studies reveal the following about RARE causes of death to CHILDREN (annual average):
Human caregivers                                   826
5 gallon buckets                                       22
Playground equipment                              15
Balloons                                                   11
Dogs                                                        10

Data on ER treated injuries to humans caused by animals (from NEISS and WISQARS):
Horses: over 10,000 injuries per million animals
Dogs: less than 6,000 injuries per million animals
**Note: Humans spend much more time around horses than dogs--so per exposure time, dogs are infinitely less dangerous than horses.

Severity of Dog Bite injuries:
92.4% of dog bite injuries require a band aid or less
7.5 % of dog bite injuries are rated as "minor" by doctors (no lasting impairment, fast healing)
0.076% of dog bite injuries are moderate-serious

From: Dogs Bite, But Balloons and Slippers are More Dangerous. Janis Bradley, 2005. Kenneth & James Publishing, Berkeley, CA