The nationwide shutdowns that occurred in the previous years were terrible for a majority of people. We couldn't go anywhere or do anything. If we did it was spent wearing a mask and staying 6 feet apart from everyone we came in contact with. You might say we lost one of our basic human needs. Socialization. That could also be the case with dogs in Cedar Rapids.

Dogs, like humans, are social creatures. It's in their nature to be part of a pack. Some would say that might be why they are known to get along with a lot of different kinds of animals. When we stopped being able to take our dogs out in public, surrounded by other people and other dogs, it's possible this has impacted the attack/bite numbers we're seeing today.

Unsplash - Jeroen Bosch
Unsplash - Jeroen Bosch

Cedar Rapids police reported to KCRG that they have responded to more than 100 dog bites/attacks since the start of 2020. 4.5 million dog attacks have been reported in the U.S in the last year alone.

Laura King is the owner of King's Creatures Animal Training and she believes socialization has been a key factor in the rising dog attack numbers.

She told KCRG

“Every dog can bite. Even the cutest, fluffiest, most snuggly little thing”

The best way to get these numbers down is a simple answer but not necessarily a simple solution. The answer is training. As I've gotten older, I'm starting to believe more and more, that in order for you to own or adopt a pet, you should have to pass a class.

Some kind of basic "how to train a dog" or "how to own a pet" class seems fair to me. Way too many people adopt animals, realize how much work they are, and then don't put in the effort to train and care for them.

It's not just training either, it's the right kind of training. With the weather warming up and summer right around the corner, people will be bringing their dogs out in public more often. If you need to, you can slowly reintroduce your dog to the outside world. Start looking for signs that your dog might want to jump at something. Laura King told KCRG

“Really it needs to be a lot more structured than that and focus on introducing them in a positive way with training to new things. It doesn’t always have to be people and pets. In fact, I always try to leave that for a little later."

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