Suffering a dog bite can be a very distressing experience. It can be painful and upsetting, mainly because we often think of dogs as friendly, loyal pets. It may result in an uncomfortable situation for both the victim and the family of the dog responsible.
Remember, dogs are animals, and like all animals, they have the potential to bite us. About 4.7 million Americans get bitten by dogs each year, and of those, 1 in 5 dog bites result in injuries that require medical attention. Most of the time, people get bitten by dogs they know.
If you, your child, or your dog get bitten by someone else’s dog, there are several steps you should follow and understand the dog bite law, depending on the situation and the severity of the dog bite.
Precautions After A Dog Bite Occurs
There are several scenarios in which a dog bite might take place. If someone else’s dog bites you, your child, or your dog, consider the circumstances. Do you know who owns the dog? Is it a puppy? Is the dog exhibiting strange or aggressive behavior?
If you know who owns the dog and the owner is present, exchange names and contact information. Obtain information from any witnesses, as well.
Ask the owner if he or she can show proof that the dog has an up-to-date rabies vaccination. If you do not know who owns the dog, you may need to get a rabies vaccination, which could cost thousands of dollars.
What to Do After a Puppy Bites You?
If a puppy bit you, stay calm and try not to react. A puppy is still a baby, and it may bite because it is teething or trying to establish its dominance. A bite from a puppy is not likely to be the result of aggression.
Though it will probably be a minor dog bite, a puppy bite might still hurt, and it may also break the skin. If the bite results in a superficial wound, follow the steps outlined below to treat it.
How To Report A Dog Bite
After receiving proper medical treatment for the dog bite, it is essential to take additional action to help ensure the same dog does not bite another person. Even if your injury was minor, file a report with the proper local authorities.
Contact your local animal control, as well as the police, to notify them of the incident.
These steps will make sure there is documentation of the incident, and it will ensure the owner takes the necessary steps to prevent his or her dog from biting again in the future. Pennsylvania dog owners may face some restrictions if the authorities deem their dog dangerous.
Next, try to gather more information about the dog. Obtain a copy of the dog’s license information. Seek out the documentation regarding other potential incidents. Does the dog have a history of attacking or biting humans or other animals? Have local authorities designated the dog as dangerous?
Legal Action After a Dog Bite
Laws surrounding dog bites vary depending on where you live. You will want to contact an attorney to help you navigate the legal complexities surrounding a dog bite incident. A personal injury lawyer will have your best interest in this situation.
At this point, you will also want to document your experience thoroughly. Take photographs of your injury. Consult your doctor if you need guidance on the safest way to do so, especially if you have to pull back bandages.
Take photos of all your wounds and the location where the bite occurred. If any clothing became torn or bloodstained during the incident, photograph it as well.
Begin taking notes about your personal experience. Record what happened when the bite occurred, and continue to record everything that ensued following the edge, including details about your injuries, any medical treatment, and your general thoughts and feelings in the days and weeks following the incident.
Keep in mind the basic knowledge about dog bites child law to ease your case.
If you are dealing with a dog bite from your dog, follow the same steps outlined above. Be sure to gather as much information about the incident as possible, especially from witnesses.
Again, if you report the incident, it may help prevent the same dog from attacking or biting other dogs and humans in the future.
The goal of this post is not to scare victims of dog bites but to inform them. Dog bites are much more severe than most people give them credit for and can result in painful and even life-threatening infections.
If you or a loved one is the victim of a dog bite, and if you have experienced adverse complications to your health, finances, or both because of the wound, contact a dog bite lawyer and read the basics about dog bite law.