Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Radio Public Service Announcements for Holiday Child Safety Around Dogs

Doggone Safe offers some radio PSAs to help keep kids safe around dogs over the holidays. Radio stations in North America must devote some air time to PSAs. Contact your local radio station to see if they are interested in playing any of these.

These dog bite prevention Public Service Announcements can be read live and some can be downloaded as recorded WAV or WMA files. Some of these are specific for the holidays and some are general for use any time. The WAV files have been professionally recorded, ready for radio play.

Download a zip file containing the PSA scripts and just the holiday PSA recordings in high quality WAV format, suitable for radio play.

Download a printable version of all scripts (holiday scripts are marked as such)

Download a zip file contained printable version of scripts and all recorded PSAs in WMA format. These are suitable for listening to with a computer or posting to a web site.

Download a zip file containing scripts and high quality WAV files for all PSAs (holiday and anytime)

Download or listen to individual PSAs produced by Doggone Safe and view each script

Thanks to Theresa McKeon and Brian McKeon for donating their time to creating the recorded PSAs

Listen to PSAs produced by Big Dog 92.7 in Regina, Saskatchewan

Thanks to Tracy Block of Big Dog 97.2 and Sally Cleland for their time in creating these. If other radio stations would like to air any of these, please contact Tracy Block for broadcast quality versions.

bigdogPSAs Produced by Big Dog 92.7

26 Stitches

Adopt a Classroom

Learn to Be a Tree

Relearn ABCs

Straight Facts

Strange Dogs

SVMA 100th Anniversary

listentoPSAs PSAs and Scripts Produced by Doggone Safe

To download individual files right click and choose "save target as" to download. indicates holiday PSA




Celebrations at Grandma’s house over the holidays are the stuff of fond memories. Noisy gatherings can make Grandma’s dog very anxious. Even the most docile pet may bite if provoked. Supervise!
 Download high quality(WAV)


Ho! Ho! Ho!  A man in a red suit coming down the chimney may be very scary for the family dog. More dog bites occur during holiday times than any other time of the year. Supervise!


Did you know that dogs talk to us all the time? A happy dog pants and wags his tail. A bossy dog has his ears forward, his mouth closed and his tail held high. This dog does not want to meet you. 
 Download high quality(WAV)


 Did you know that dogs talk to us all the time? A happy dog pants and wags his tail. A scared dog has his mouth closed and holds his tail between his legs, he may even be wagging it or backing away. Give a scared dog his space, he might be scared enough to bite or growl to get you to go away. 
no recording


Did you know that dogs talk to us all the time? A happy dog pants and wags his tail. A bossy dog stands tall, leaning forward with his ears forward, his mouth closed and his tail held as high as he can get it. This dog does not want to meet you, he wants you to leave his place and his stuff alone.
no recording


If you are visiting a friend with a puppy and the puppy is too frisky and jumping , you should…
A. push the puppy away
B. pick the puppy up by the scruff of the neck
C. Be a Tree and stand still
 The answer is C. Be a Tree. Trees are boring and the puppy will soon lose interest. 


If a strange dog comes over to you, you should… 
A. yell at the dog to go away
B. Be a Tree and stand still
C. try to make friends with the dog
 The answer is B. Be a Tree. The dog will most likely sniff around you and move on. Never touch  a strange dog. 
 Download high quality(WAV)


If a dog is loose and barking at you, you should… 
A. Be a Tree and stand still until he gets bored and goes away
B. run away screaming
C. try to pet him to calm him down 
The answer is A. Be a Tree. Stand still and look at your feet.



 Did you know that dogs don’t like hugs and kisses, especially from kids or strangers?. Your dog may tolerate many hugs before finally snapping.


 Did you know that most dog bites to children are by a family pet in someone’s home and that hugging the dog is a common cause if these bites? Dogs warn before they bite and you can learn to speak dog and recognize the signs of a dog that is tolerating, but not enjoying attention from a child. Keep kids and dogs safe this holiday season, watch for signs of anxiety in the dog and intervene if you see them. no recording


 Did you know that most dog bites to children are by a family pet in someone’s home? Dogs warn before they bite often by yawning or licking their chops.


 Dogs don’t like hugs and kisses. Surprised?


 Did you know that more dog bites happen over the holidays than any other time of the year? Supervise and give the dog a private space with bone to chew when kids visit.


Do you know how to speak dog? A dog that yawns or licks his chops want to be left alone. no recording


 Noisy gatherings, changes in routines and excited children may stress and overwhelm even the most docile dog.  Keep holiday celebrations in homes with dogs safe by thinking ahead. no recording


 Dog bites occur during holiday times more then any other time of the year! no recording


 Did you know that dogs talk to us all time? Parents, if you see the half moon of white in your dog’s eye when kids are around, intervene before an accident happens.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Parents: Learn About Dog Body Language Before the Holidays

Many dog bites happen over the holidays, partly because dogs are stressed and overwhelmed by changes in routine and increased activity levels in the house. Parents are also stressed and frequently overwhelmed as well. The combination can lead to a set of circumstances that conducive to unfortunate accidents in which a child is bitten. These bites DO NOT HAPPEN OUT OF THE BLUE. Sorry for yelling, but we have just heard so many parents and dog owners tell us that the dog bit without warning, that he has never bitten before, that he loves kids. The latter two statements are true in most cases, the former is not. The fact is, that the dog did warn in some way, it was just that no-one noticed. By the time the dog gets to the point of growling or snapping, he is stressed to the point where he is likely to bite. For many people these overt warnings, or even the bite itself are the only things blatant enough to be noticeable. Before a dog brings out the big guns of overt aggression he will signal his distress and anxiety with more subtle signs. Most commonly these include licking his chops or flicking his tongue out, yawning, scratching himself or showing a half moon of white in his eye when a child approaches or tries to interact with him. He may give a whole body shake after an interaction with a child. Slightly more obvious, but often ignored are signs of avoidance, such as turning his head away, shifting his body away or getting up and leaving. Effusive licking of a child's face is another way that a dog might try to increase distance. This type of licking should not be confused with affection. Read more about this.

We want parents to learn all about dog body language so that they know what to look for and how to tell if their dog is happy or stressed around their child and how to tell when intervention is required. We want all parents to know the warning signs so that no family's holidays are ruined by a dog bite incident. There is lots of information at our website, but the best source of information for parents is our online course: Basic Dog Body Language. To celebrate the coming holidays and hopefully prevent some nice family dogs from biting "out of the blue" we have put this course on sale for $20 until Nov 15.

Click here for more information

Click here to register

Have a safe and happy holiday season!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Holiday Dog Bite Prevention Tips

Holidays Are Stressful for Dogs

The holidays are especially stressful for dogs due to changes in routine and the comings and going of visitors. Many dog bites happen at this time of year.

When visiting a house with a dog, children should be taught not to approach the dog (even if the dog has been friendly on other occasions). If the dog comes to them they should stand still like a tree and let the dog sniff. Only if the the dog is wagging and panting and coming to them for attention, and parent and dog owners are supervising and have given permission, should a child touch the dog. Dog owners should gauge their dog’s reaction to visitors. If the dog is overly excited, barking or growling, cowering away, trying to hide or otherwise showing signs of anxiety or aggression, the dog should be kept separate from visiting children for the ENTIRE DURATION of the child’s visit. The dog should have its own place in a crate or another room with toys, a bone to chew on and its special bed or blanket so that it can be happy and comfortable and away from guests. Even dogs who seem happy with visitors should never be alone in the room with visiting children. No preschooler, toddler or baby should be allowed to be near your dog unless you personally also have your hands on the dog and can prevent face to face contact between child and dog and can prevent the child from hugging or otherwise bothering the dog.

Greeting People at the Door

Dogs should not be allowed to greet visitors at the door. This is for the safety of the dog and the visitors. Keep the dogs in separate room or crate until the visitors are settled and then allow the dog to say hello if appropriate. If you are not sure about your dog, then leave him confined or keep him on a leash. Make sure that the dog associates visitors with something good for the dog, such as special treats or a stuffed bone.

Not the Time to Train the Dog

If you do perceive a problem between your dog and visiting children - THIS IS NOT THE TIME TO WORK ON IT. It is not reasonable to use visiting children to help train your dog. Take preventative measures to ensure that your dog does not have the opportunity to bite and once the holiday season is over seek the help of a dog behavior specialist who uses positive reinforcement methods to solve the dog's problem.

Family Gatherings

Family gatherings at a relative’s house are the source of fond memories for many. The relative’s dog may not enjoy these events as much as the rest of the family. Noise, confusion and changes in routine are stressful for dogs. Even a normally calm and docile pet may become agitated enough to bite under the extreme circumstances of a boisterous family celebration. Supervision may be lax if each adult thinks that another is watching the children. Children are the most likely victims of dog bites in this situation. Doggone Safe offers the following tips:

  • Put the dog in his crate with a bone or favorite chew toy, at least during the most hectic times – guests arriving and leaving as well as dinner preparation and serving.
  • Assign one adult to be in charge of the dog, to watch for signs of stress and protect from unwanted attention from children.
  • Signs of stress include: The dog yawns or licks his chops.The dog shows the white part of his eye in a half moon shape.
  • If the dog shows any of these signs, then he is worried and wants to be left alone. Put the dog in his crate or in a room away from the guests with a favorite chew toy or bone. 
  • If the dog licks his chops, yawns or shows the half moon eye when a child approaches or is petting him, intervene immediately and ensure that the child cannot access the dog. 
  • Do not allow visiting children to hug the dog. Dogs don’t like hugs and kisses. Even if the dog tolerates this under normal circumstances he may not tolerate this from strangers or in a high stress situation with lots of noise and people. 
  • Other signs that the dog does not welcome attention from children (or adult) guests include the following:

  • The dog turns his head away, walks away or tries to hide under furniture.
  • The dog freezes and becomes very still, with his mouth closed. He may be staring intensely at the person who is bothering him and may growl. This dog is a few seconds away from a bite.
  • The dog growls or raises the fur along his back.

  • Assign one adult to supervise each baby or toddler with no other tasks expected. 
  • If you have multiple dogs, consider kenneling them, crating them or keeping them in another room during large gatherings. 
  • Supervise at all times.

Download our handout with a summary of tips for parents and dog owners


Visit our article library for some articles about keeping kids and dogs safe during the holidays. Scroll through the list looking for those articles marked with a candy cane. Download the Doggone Safe Holiday Press Release with more tips


Doggone Safe Members: Download the Doggone Safe Holiday Press Release that you can edit to send to local newspaper, radio and TV media to promote your business and disseminate our safety messages. Join Doggone Safe.