The “Be a Tree” dog bite prevention education program is now in Hampton Roads!
Half of all children are bitten by a dog by the time they are 12 years old. Dog bites are considered to be a serious public health problem by the American Veterinary Medical Association. Over 4.7 million people a year are bitten by a dog. Dog bites are the fifth most frequent cause of visits to
the emergency room by children. Most bites are by the family dog or other dog known to the child and can be prevented through education. You can verify this by conducting an informal survey within your school. Visit a few classrooms and ask for a show of hands of children who have been bitten by dogs. Then ask how many were bitten by their own dog, or another dog that they know. You will be shocked by the response.
The “Be a Tree” program is an innovative and interactive program created by the non-profit organization Doggone Safe. Children will learn to read dog body language and how to act safely around dogs by looking at large format photographs and by playing interactive games. The “Be a Tree” program is unique in its use of several different teaching strategies, its focus on physical activity and its emphasis on positive messages. Instead of telling children “don’t do this and don’t do that”, the “Be a Tree” program empowers them with the knowledge they need to make safe decisions based on the body language and the actions of the dog and the situation at hand.
Please visit the Doggone Safe website (www.doggonesafe.com) to find out more about the Be a Tree program and type of information that this organization provides.
“The Be A Tree program is fun and terrific. The kids and teachers loved it.” Jennifer Shryock – Dog Bite Prevention Educator and Dog Behavior Specialist – Family Paws – North Carolina
“I believe your program [Be a Tree] is the best dog bite prevention program available.” Sherri Utter – Retired Elementary School Teacher, Animatch Volunteer – Quebec
The “Be a Tree” presentation will help meet the injury prevention education goals set out in the curriculum. The program includes a set of suggested follow-up activities designed by teachers and related to dog bite prevention education that are consistent with math, reading and language components of the curriculum. These can be reviewed at the Doggone Safe website.