Dog Attacks

2011 Dog Attack & Interference Survey - United States Report:

The Seeing Eye conducted a survey of guide dog users (regardless of school affiliation) to collect data on the frequency, circumstances and effects of attacks and interference by aggressive dogs. The purpose of the study was to confirm anecdotal information indicating that guide dog teams experience a high frequency of attacks and interference, identify possible interventions to help reduce their frequency, and to establish baseline data to assist with future studies.

Use the links below to download a basic text file, PDF or Microsoft Word Document of the report. The Seeing Eye would like to express its deepest gratitude to all who participated to help us better understand the gravity of this problem.

Imagine that you are blind and work with a guide dog to go about your daily life. Now imagine what it would be like for you or your guide dog to be attacked by an aggressive dog that you can hear but cannot see. In a matter of seconds, your life and your dog’s life could change. the experience would be terrifying and it could be hard for both of you to recover. Your dog may be temporarily or permanently unable to do the work that has changed your life and given you freedom.

Such attacks occur all too frequently, posing a significant threat to guide dog teams. The Seeing Eye works extensively with graduates, state legislators, national consumer groups, other guide dog schools, law enforcement agencies, and animal-related organizations to prevent these ongoing incidents of attack and interference by loose or uncontrolled dogs. We cannot do it alone. We need your help to spread the word. Find some great resources to help educate the public about these issues at: www.GuideDogAtWork.org.

Background on Dog Attacks

According to the National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 4.7 million Americans suffer dog bites each year, and of those almost 800,000 are serious enough wounds that they require medical attention.

Any dog - regardless of its breed or size - can pose a threat to the health and safety of people, or other animals, if it is allowed to roam loose or is inadequately controlled.

The significance of this threat for guide dog teams must not be underestimated. The Seeing Eye 2011 Dog Attack Survey shows that the vast majority of guide dog teams have experienced attacks and interference by loose or uncontrolled dogs. Even if injury does not result, unprovoked attacks and harassment on a guide dog team can make it impossible for some guide dogs to continue to perform their duties and can also rob the blind handler of the ability to travel freely without being fearful of subsequent attacks.

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For more information, contact The Seeing Eye Advocacy Specialist toll-free at (800) 539-4425 or email advocacy@seeingeye.org.