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Are dog bites a serious problem in New York City?

Approximately 4,000 dog bites are reported each year in New York City. To put this figure in context, there are around 50,000 NYC motor vehicle injury crashes each year, 12,000 pedestrian injuries and 4,000 bicyclist injuries.

Because New Yorkers own dogs at a lower rate than the national average, nationwide dog bite statistics are a better gauge of the problem. Across the United States, an estimated 4.5 million dog bites occur annually. In terms of annual emergency room (ER) visits, dog bite accidents (330,000 annual ER visits) send more people to the ER each year than accidents involving playground equipment, ATVs, horseback riding and skateboards.

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