That Loveable Little Furball Can Hurt You | NBC New York

That Loveable Little Furball Can Hurt You



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    This little long-haired Jack Russell wouldn't hurt anybody, would he?

    See Spot. See Spot Run. See Spot trip his owner, send him tumbling down the stairs and off to the emergency room.

    Sound like a familiar story? It should. An average of 86,629 people visit emergency rooms every year because they tripped over their pet, or their pet’s toys, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
    "There are many benefits to pet ownership," said Judy A. Stevens, an epidemiologist at the CDC's injury center. "But they also can be a hazard." 
    The CDC reviewed the records of 8,000 ER visits at 66 hospitals and extrapolated to get a figure for the entire country.
    The findings show that pet-related accidents account for nearly 1 percent of the 8 million falls that end up in the hospital in the U.S. Mostly it’s dogs causing their owners pain---man’s best friend is responsible for 88 percent of the injuries the CDC studied. 
    The rest of the numbers break down like this:
    --12 percent of cat related injuries occurred when someone was chasing Tabby; 33 percent of those kitty chasers tripped over their feline furball.
    ---68 percent of dog-related falls and 72 percent of cat-related falls affected women.
    ---Children 14 and under account for the most falls, but those 75 and older have the highest rate of injury.
    ---25 percent of dog-related accidents happen while taking Fido for a walk.
    ---3 percent of dog-related accidents happen when running away from a dog.
    ---1 percent of dog-related accidents happen when breaking up a fight.
    In order to avoid such calamities, the CDC has a couple of obvious recommendations training your pets thoroughly and making sure that areas where pets and humans interact have plenty of light.