Adults and children alike could benefit from learning some etiquette to implement when greeting dogs. Whether you know the dog owner or not, you might not be familiar with the dog’s previous behavior. The pup might seem like a sweet animal from the outside looking in, but they could have a history of biting several people.

The state of Nevada doesn’t have specific laws for proving liability in animal attacks. Rather, if you fall victim to a dog attack and are hoping to receive compensation, then you will have to prove that the dog owner knew the dog might be dangerous prior to the attack. But to try and prevent this possibility of an attack altogether, you can take steps to check in with the owner, let the dog get comfortable with you and understand cues of the dog not wanting your attention.

Ask before petting

A general rule of thumb with all dogs, you should ask the owner before petting. Chances are the owner knows more about how the dog might respond to you. Specifically, they will also know whether the dog is socialized, or trained to positively react to new people. And plainly put, it’s polite to not just invade someone’s space without introducing yourself.

Let the dog sniff your hand

Olfactory receptors make our sense of smell work, and dogs have 60 times more olfactory receptors as humans. Meaning much of their information that they take in about the world is through their sense of smell. Letting a dog sniff your hand is akin to handshake — it allows dogs to become familiar with you before petting them.

Approach the situation gently

When you do encounter a dog, whether they are walking the street with or without their owner or in their own home, it’s best not to charge toward them. Animals bring joy to the lives of many people, but if you run up to them without warning you can startle them. Instead, you should slow your roll and understand that if a dog is backing away from you or sleeping, then it’s probably best to let them be.

Unfortunately, accidents happen, so if you or a loved one are still living with the impact of a traumatic dog attack, then a personal injury attorney can help you recuperate.