Pets, trips and falls
From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.
Having a pet around the home can be comforting. Having a critter underfoot can be dangerous.
At the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Judy Stevens says nearly 87,000 people a year are hurt in falls involving a pet. Falls were most common among young children and adults aged 35 to 54.
[Judy Stevens speaks] "But the highest injury rates occurred among people 75 and older. These falls often caused fractures, which have very serious effects for older adults."
Dogs were more likely than cats to cause falls, often by tripping, pushing, or pulling people. People also fell over pet items. Owners should reduce clutter, and get dogs obedience training to reduce behaviors that can lead to falls.
The study is in CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports.
Learn more at hhs.gov.
HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.
Last revised: May 7, 2011