SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Recently, both Sioux Falls and Rapid City animal control services have seen an uptick in animal bites.

Most of the time, a day in the park with your dog goes without incident. But this spring, animal control services in South Dakota have seen an unprecedented amount of dog bite cases.

“I talked to a couple former animal control officers who were here before me, and they said that this month is definitely different for them as well, like hearing how many animal bite cases we’ve had. Its definitely been going up for sure,” Officer KP Davidson of Rapid City Animal Services and Enforcement said.

When a dog sees an unfamiliar person, a number of different things could trigger a bite.

“It could be anything; it could be something. It could be somebody walking by them; it could be a motorized toy that somebody has out. Sometimes, with the kids, they pull on the animals, pull their ears, their tails and stuff. That could cause them to bite as well,” Officer Patty Beckman of Sioux Falls Animal Control said.

You can do your part to ensure the safety of those around you.

“Dog owners can prevent their dogs from biting by if they see someone coming towards them. If they are out walking their dog, bring them across the street; just avoid that situation all together. If they see another dog coming, they can move that dog from the situation and bring it across the street as well,” Beckman said.

“Desensitizing your animal, like with desensitizing training, to not go after specific things, specific people, would definitely help out quite a bit,” Davidson said.

If a dog bites you, contact Animal Control right away and get to the nearest urgent care clinic.