Animal attacks are violent, often fatal attacks caused by animals against humans, one of the most common being bites. Bites are wounds caused as a result of an animal or human attack. These attacks cause of human injuries and fatalities worldwide. According to the 2012 U.S. Pet Ownership & Demographics Sourcebook, 56% of United States citizens owned a pet. In the United States in 1994, approximately 4.7 million people were bitten by dogs. One factor that has notably affected the amount of these statistical numbers has been the increase in the animal population. This has increased the risk of transmission of zoonotic diseases and other bacteria that can affect human health. The frequency of animal attacks varies with geographical location. In the United States, a person is more likely to be killed by a domesticated dog than they are to die from being hit by lightning according to the National Safety Council.
Animal attacks have been identified as a major public health problem. In 1997, it was estimated that up to 2 million animal bites occur each year in the United States. Injuries caused by animal attacks result in thousands of fatalities worldwide every year. “Unprovoked attacks occur when the animal approaches and attacks a person(s) who is the principal attractant, for example, predation on humans…” All causes of death are reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention each year. Medical injury codes are used to identify specific cases.The World Health Organization uses identical coding, though it is unclear whether all countries keep track of fatalities caused by animals. Though animals, excluding some tigers, do not regularly hunt humans, there is concern that these incidents are “ bad for many species ‘public image’.”