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Dog bites on rise in Colorado

State Farm reports 66 people filed claims in 2012

Dog bites going up in Colorado

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Dog attacks are going up in Colorado, according to State Farm Insurance.  The company says there was a 12 percent increase from 2011 to 2012.

It reports 66 people in Colorado reported dog bites last year, compared to just 59 in 2011.

The injuries cost State Farm more than $1.3 million in claims.

Longtime Colorado Springs veterinarian Dr. John Suddith said any dog in right circumstance can act unpredictably.

Dr. Suddith said just like people, a stranger can make a dog nervous. 

"If someone were to come up to us and all of a sudden reach for us, we'd shy back.  Dogs use the tools they have at their discretion, which are teeth if they can't get away, and they might try to bite," he said.

State Farm said more than half of the victims are children.  The company advises people to stay away from a dog eating, don't pull a dog's tail and don't try to outrun a dog.

For more tips go to State Farm's Dog Bite Infographic. 

Nationwide, there was more than 3,600 claims. 

Top ten states for dog bite claims:

1.  California

2.  Illinois

3.  Texas

4.  Ohio

5.  Pennsylvania

6.  Michigan

7.  Indiana

8.  Florida

9.  Georgia

10.  New York

Colorado ranked 19th on the list, up from 21st in 2011.

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