Submitted by the Oswego County Humane Society
With the assistance of a grant from Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, the Oswego County Humane Society has produced a new coloring book, â€œBe Safe With Your Best Friend.â€ Geared toward early elementary students, the coloring book offers activities for children with a focus on how to be safe with their own dogs and with strange dogs. For parents, it also compiles statistics about the incidence and costs of dog bites in the United States. For example, each year, 4.7 million people are bitten by dogs. The majority of dog attacks (61%) happen at home or in a familiar place and the majority of biting dogs ( 77% ) belong to the victimâ€˜s family or a friend.
â€œWhen we read those statistics we knew it was vital to get information to families and children about how to safely interact with their dogs and other peopleâ€™s dogs. Our mission is to provide services and programs that strengthen the human/animal bond, and safety for children so that they can truly enjoy their pets, is an important part of what we do,â€ said Diane Broadwell, chair of animal services for the Humane Society.
The coloring book will be distributed to local elementary schools and youth groups and at community events, and can be downloaded at no cost from the Humane Societyâ€™s website at http://www.oswegohumane.org/HumaneEducation.htm. Assistance in producing the coloring book was also provided by Maria Marrero, Professor of Theatre Design and Technology at Syracuse University, for the illustrations, and the Oswego Printing Company and Wayuga Press.
Karen Hoffman, President of the Humane Society, said â€œWe are grateful to Excellus BlueCross BlueShield for its recognition that pet safety is one component of its focus on promoting healthy communities, and we are proud to have Excellus BCBS as our partner in this humane education campaign.â€
For more information, call the Oswego County Humane Society at 315-207-1070.