Pet Safety

Keeping people safe around pets is the number one priority of Cincinnati Animal CARE. Dog bites are largely preventable with the right knowledge and information.

What steps does CAC take to adopt out safe dogs?

At Cincinnati Animal CARE, we take in over 4,000 dogs a year, often with no background or information. Our team members use every chance we can to gain information about our dogs. We use the following strategies to gather information:

  • Every dog is assessed within 48 hours of arrival through a series of handling procedures and dog playgroups
  • Dogs are assigned a color to indicate their level of handleability
  • Notes are made in the dog’s profile to guide our matchmakers about things they like, don’t like and recommended homes
  • Dogs who have some work to do (example, resource guarding) are put on Behavior Modification plans with our Behavior and Training team
  • We have a Lifesaving Committee who meet every week to discuss bites, behavior progress and behavioral euthanasias 
  • Dogs are assessed and reassessed throughout their time at CAC; every time they are handled by staff, volunteers or fosters, we gain information

Please keep in mind that dogs are live, unpredictable animals. We attempt to look at each animal holistically and individually. We notify every adopter and foster of any and all behavior issues (if any) that we have seen and provide resources to work on or manage the behavior. However, no matter what we do, we cannot anticipate every situation.

Bringing a new dog home

You just adopted a dog! You are so excited. You are going to love them forever and give them the best life! You know exactly what’s happening but keep in mind that your dog doesn’t. To your dog, they were just picked up by a stranger, put in a car they are unfamiliar with, and taken to a house they’ve never been to. No matter how great you and your home are, this is often a very scary time for dogs. To make sure you and your dog have a successful life together, it’s important to give them time to adjust at the beginning. Here are some tips:

  1. Remain calm and go slow
  2. Minimize the number of people they are meeting
  3. Get them on a walk around your neighborhood to get familiar with sights and sounds
  4. Use a crate when you can’t supervise them
  5. Give them a safe and quiet place to get away uninterrupted
  6. Let them sleep! Many shelter dogs are exhausted when they first leave.
  7. Keep them off the furniture
  8. Remember that you are new to them so avoid hugging and don’t put your face close to theirs
  9. If you have other pets, give the other pets a chance to escape, keep your new dog on a leash (to easily grab them), and offer slow introductions (through a door, then from a distance, then slowly getting closer)

It can take dogs 3 months to even a year to get completely comfortable in their new home and familiar with your routine. The best thing you can do is give them time to adjust!

Kid and Dog Safety

Kids love dogs! But it’s so important to keep the next generation of veterinarians, animal shelter workers, and dog owners safe. 

Key tips for kid safety around dogs:

  • No hugging
  • Don’t put your face close to a dog’s
  • Never touch a dog that is eating or sleeping
  • Be calm and respectful
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