Dog attacks can result in some very serious injuries. In most cases, an animal attack requires legal action, just to recover the costs of medical treatment for one’s injuries. Keeping that in mind, there are a number of responses one should follow in the event that he or she has been bitten by a dog.
Seek Medical Attention
This should be your primary concern, following a dog attack, even if injuries aren’t readily apparent. According to Brauns Law, approximately 20 percent of the 4.5 million dog bites per year require medical treatment. A few of these injuries required reconstructive surgery and some of them even resulted in death, so it’s important to treat your injuries immediately. You should also find out if the animal carried any diseases that they may have passed on. For instance, rabies can be transmitted when an infected dog’s saliva comes into contact with a bite victim’s blood.
Identify the Dog’s Owner
This should be done as early in the process as possible. Seeking medical treatment is the priority, so, unless you’re familiar with the pet owner, this is something you may have to find out later. As soon as you’re able, determine the name of the dog’s owner and as much contact information as you can obtain. At the very least, you should acquire the individual’s name, telephone number, and address.
Consider a Personal Injury Claim
When it comes to getting compensation for your injuries, you are probably going to have to go to court. Most people won’t admit that their dog was in the wrong, and they definitely don’t want to pay for your injuries. Once you have seen your doctor and assess the extent of your injuries, you can decide if you want to make a claim against the owner. Remember that the burden of proof will be on you, and if you antagonized the dog at all, you have no case.
Depending on your state, there are different rules for filing a personal injury claim on a dog bite. Make sure you do your research quickly, so you don’t pass the statute of limitations. You should also figure out if you are the first person that this dog has bitten. The number of attacks this dog has made will be a crucial piece of information if you do go to trial.
Every dog bite should be treated seriously. Victims of dog bites should always consult with an attorney, especially where a settlement payment is offered. You want to ensure your medical expenses are covered and you have received appropriate compensation for pain and suffering. An initial consultation with a dog bite attorney can help outline your options and give you insight into your best course of action.