In the United States, over 36 percent of homeowners call a dog their family companion. Every year, more than 350,000 dog bite victims are seen in the emergency room, and an estimated 750,000 victims receive medical attention. Unfortunately, severe dog bite injuries can result in:
- Brain injuries
- Nerve damage
- Permanent scarring
- Spinal cord injuries
- Serious infections
- Psychological trauma
The Oakland dog bite attorneys at The Barnes Firm are ready to help dog bite victims every step of the way. Whether injuries are substantial or not, our lawyers are here to provide the answers and direction victims need.
How to Prevent Dog Bites
Dog bites can happen at any time to anyone, and even though most dogs are friendly by nature, some have the potential to become anxious or upset and bite strangers. A dog owner is fully responsible in making sure that their dog does not attack others, but you can also take steps to make sure you do not put yourself at risk by being bitten or attacked.
- Always ask permission to pet someone else’s dog and let the dog see and sniff you first.
- Don’t disrupt a dog that is eating, sleeping, or caring for its puppies.
- If an unfamiliar dog approaches you, don’t panic or make loud noises. Remain motionless and stay calm.
- If you notice any stray dogs or dogs behaving strangely, alert another adult or animal control.
- If a dog knocks you over, immediately curl into a ball and protect your head with your hands over your ears and neck.
- If a dog is attempting to attack you, put your purse or jacket between you and the dog as a barrier.
What To Do If a Dog Has Attacked You or a Loved One
It can be difficult to know how to respond and what to do first, but our Oakland dog bite attorneys have compiled useful information to help you to prepare in case you’re ever faced with a dog bite situation.
- Seek Medical Attention
It is critical that you or the dog bite victim receives immediate medical attention after being attacked by a dog. Do not wait to see if the injury will heal by itself. A medical professional will be able to examine the bite for additional damage, provide adequate treatment, and will document your injuries.
- Document the Accident and How It Happened
Having what happened during the accident in your own words helps avoid forgetting essential details about the attack. Have someone that you trust write down the information while you receive medical assistance. If possible, have someone get the contact information of any witnesses to the attack and take pictures of your injury.
- Talk With The Dog’s Owner(s)
If you know the dog’s owner, let them know about the incident immediately. Letting them know of a severe attack can help them take precautions to make sure that similar accidents do not occur in the future. Also, ask if the dog has a current rabies vaccination. Ask for the rabies vaccine license number, the name of their veterinarian, and take down the owner’s name, address, and phone number in case you need assistance with medical bills. If you don’t know the owner, consider contacting local animal control or the police department to report the incident.
It’s in a Victim’s Best Interest to Hire a Lawyer
Despite a large number of dog bite victims each year, less than one percent of those victims without a lawyer receive money from homeowners insurance companies and renters insurance companies for their injuries. Hiring a lawyer who specializes in dog bites will know how to present a case to an insurance company to get it resolved without going to court.
A lawyer specializing in dog bite law can tell victims whether they have a legal claim, the possible extent of their liability, what types of defense may be utilized, and the potential legal and monetary consequences of their dog bite case.
Why Choose the Oakland Dog Bite Attorneys at The Barnes Firm?
Dog bite law is very complex, as it is based on a combination of state statutes, county ordinances, municipal codes, and prior court cases. Our Oakland dog bite attorneys have been specializing in these types of cases for many years, and are ready to come to your defense.
At The Barnes Firm, our Oakland dog bite attorneys will hold owners responsible for your injuries, and we’ll fight insurance companies to get you and your family compensation for this traumatic experience.
If a dog bite has injured you or a loved one, contact us online or call one of our Oakland dog bite attorneys for a FREE case evaluation.