Photo Gallery | Pawmetto Lifeline offers training to police on dog behavior
COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - About a dozen police officers from several law enforcement agencies throughout the midlands attended a special training session on dog behavior Friday.
Pawmetto Lifeline invited dog behavior specialist Teoti Anderson to explain to officers how to recognize potentially threatening behavior in dogs and how to deal with it. A specialist from Carolina Wildlife also offered suggestions in handling situations involving wild animals.
"We're just hoping through this training that our officers will feel more prepared to respond to dogs that may be behaving aggressively, or even wildlife," said Denise WIlkinson, CEO of Pawmetto Lifeline. "Today I'm hoping everybody will get a better understanding of dog behavior, what is truly vicious and what is just fear and how to respond to that behavior."
Pawmetto Lifeline decided to offer the training after an Irmo police officer shot a dog who was running loose and threatening a pedestrian.
"We hope something very good will come out of this unfortunate situation that took place a few months ago," Wilkinson said.
Officers from police departments in Irmo, Lexington West Columbia and Columbia attended the session.
Wilkinson offered some advice to anyone who encounters a dog who appears aggressive or threatening:
"The first thing they should do is call animal control," she said. "And if animal control cannot get there quick enough, just leave the animal alone, especially if you don't feel comfortable dealing with the animal."
"Something very simple as looking at an animal in the eye when they are fearful, you shouldn't do things like that because that is even more threatening," said Wilkinson. "Approaching an animal head-on when they're fearful is also seen as a form of aggression."
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