Dog owners are responsible for their pet’s actions, but what happens if you get bitten by a dog or attacked by someone’s pet?
According to the Center for Disease Control, approximately 4.5 million Americans are bitten by dogs each year. Nearly half of the victims are children; one in five bites requires medical attention for serious injury. Over 27,000 individuals had reconstructive surgery in 2012 as a result of injuries from animal attacks.
These incidents can cause serious and sometimes permanent injuries, such as abrasions, punctures, infections, scars, lacerations, and even post traumatic stress syndrome. Getting treatment can be expensive and sometimes means that victims are unable to work, resulting in lost earnings.
It can be difficult to decide to seek legal action under these circumstances, because oftentimes the victim knows the animal’s owner and doesn’t want to cause them any hardship. However, in many animal attack cases the animal owner’s insurance company will cover the legal claim and any settlement or judgment that results from the case.
The Center for Disease Control offers the following tips for preventing animal attacks:
- Don’t approach an unfamiliar dog.
- Don’t run from a dog; remain still when an unfamiliar dog approaches you.
- Children should inform an adult when a stray dog appears and when a dog acts unusual.
- Do not run from a dog or make direct eye contact with the animal.
- “Let sleeping dogs lie”—don’t disturb an animal that is sleeping, eating, or taking care of babies.
- Don’t pet a dog without allowing it to see you first.
The compassionate personal injury attorneys at Schuerman Law understand how to approach situations such as dog bites and animal attacks with finesse and courtesy. If you or someone you know has been the victim of an animal attack, call 1-800-274-0045 today for a free consultation.
You can learn more about dog bites and animal attacks from the CDC here: http://www.cdc.gov/HomeandRecreationalSafety/Dog-Bites/