Dog Bite Injuries
Dog bites are a national problem that has reached near epidemic proportions. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that close to 4.7 million people are bitten by dogs each year, with 800,000 individuals actually seeking medical attention. That’s why our firm is here to help.
Our practice understands that dog bites are a serious issue that impacts both adults and children. Dog bites can be debilitating and sometimes disfiguring, can cause lost wages as well as time away from work and school. The expense for treatment after being attacked can run into thousands of dollars. Dog bites are especially problematic for young children. Approximately half of all dog bite victims are under the age of 12 and almost two thirds of dog attacks involving children who are 4-9 years old involve bites to the face and upper body.
While the media often portray certain breeds as being highly aggressive, we recognize that it’s the owners who are at fault for the injuries that result from their dogs. Overwhelming statistics show that dogs who are unsterilized, unlicensed, unvaccinated, poorly socialized and either intentionally trained to be aggressive or not trained at all account for the greatest number of bites causing serious injury. Irresponsible owners usually have a high recidivism rate, meaning their dog will most likely hurt someone else.
So are there some breeds that are more apt to bite than others? While genetics may play some role, the greatest predictor of a dog’s behavior is actually the owner’s behavior. That’s why whenever someone’s dog bites and causes injury, the victim may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages and even pain and suffering. Our firm is here to offer you every possible legal option. We’re prepared to take your case all the way to trial.
If you’ve been bitten or attacked by a dog, you’ll also need to understand and protect your rights. Seek immediate medical attention and contact your animal care and control agency to file a dog bite report. If possible, identify the dog and try to get the name and address of the dog’s owner as well as their homeowner’s insurance information. Have a medical professional take photographs of all wounds and injuries and document everything in writing. Record the events of the attack while they are still fresh in your mind. And contact our firm as soon as possible so that we can help you receive proper restitution. We’ll help you document every aspect of your case to ensure that your rights are fully protected. Since a “dangerous dog” hearing may occur immediately after an attack, and some states have a statute of limitations for personal injury cases, we stand ready to provide you with immediate assistance.
Finally, don’t sign away your rights to fair compensation. With the exception of hospital paperwork, your signature should not appear on anything unless you’ve consulted with an attorney. In addition, do not give written or verbal statements to insurance companies, property owners or the dog’s owner unless you’ve consulted with our firm.