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Personal Injury Law Blog | Dog Bite Law Blog | Los Angeles Dog Bite Injury Attorneys

Dog Bite Attacks—What to Do and Not Do

Shepherd attacks man
Shepherd attacks man at the dog show

Dog attacks can happen in seconds. In fact, many arise without any warning. Still worse, they could result in devastating, serious injuries. This attack is the type of harm that can occur while jogging, visiting, walking, working in your yard or even going from your vehicle into your house when a dog.

There are some ways to help reduce the risk of attack by a canine:

  • Do not look the dog in the eye, to a canine this is a challenge.
  • Stop, stand still and slowly begin retreating. Never run from a canine, since they will perceive it as a game.

These two things may help to avoid an attack in some cases. Also, escaping from a vicious dog may not always be possible. So if not, the hurt person can hold the owner responsible for the damage. In California and most other states, must keep their pets under control at all times.

So this means the canine should be within the property owner’s fencing or leashed. Owners remain responsible for the actions of the dog no matter where the dog has traveled. So this means bites on the canine proprietor’s property are subject to injury claims.

Annually, tens of thousands of children and adults get treated in hospital emergency rooms. Many of these visits are for canine attacks. Injuries range from minor to extremely serious. Also, some require surgery and reconstructive surgery. One of the two most significant factors in a dog bite remain infections and rabies.

What to Do After a Dog Bite?

There are vital steps to take after a canine bite. These must take place to ensure health and protection of legal rights.

  • After being bitten by a dog, minor injury or not, you must seek medical care. Severe infection could later make the injury a severe health issue.
  • If the dog bite is not a big deal, it remains important to find the canine’s owner. Tell them you were bitten. Next, inquire about the dog’s shots, especially rabies shots. In cases where the dog owner is unknown, animal control and the police may be able to locate the owner.
  • File a police report. That way there is official documentation.
  • If a friend or relative owns the canine in question, a police report may not be necessary. But medical documentation will be crucial. Also, the injured party can go through the pet owner’s homeowners insurance to recover damages. But this means dealing with an insurance company to obtain financial compensation. And this would be for medical and other expenses. So that could mean proving economic damages were suffered.
  • Seek the advice of a personal injury attorney. In fact, get someone experienced in this area of the law. In any event, they could evaluate your claim. That way they can determine the best course of legal action. They are experts at obtaining financial compensation.
  • Do preserve clothing and any other evidence from the dog bite attack. Also, never launder the garment.
  • Do obtain witness names and contact information if the harm is not severe.

What Not to Do In a Dog Attack.

After a canine attack, there are some things victims should avoid. In fact, some actions could result in harming their claim. And this means getting a lower settlement or no settlement.

  • When speaking to insurance company representatives of the pet owner do not offer information. Answer the questions truthfully. But do not provide extra information. Any information you provide to the insurance company adjuster will be used in determining the settlement amount offered.
  • Do not admit fault in the incident. Consult an accomplished dog bite injury attorney. They can determine the amount of error or if you were not actually at fault in the episode. Admitting guilt to an insurance company adjuster can kill your case. Usually, the admission is followed by a denial or reduced settlement.
  • Do not delay consulting a dog bite attack lawyer. This delay should be avoided because a statute of limitations for filing personal injury claims remains. But there are other reasons at act quickly. These reasons include deterioration of evidence and fading of witness memories or problems locating people later on.

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