Unfortunately, not every dog owner devotes enough time to training their pets. That’s why some dogs are aggressive towards people. This leads to dog bite injuries and other horrible consequences. According to statistics, 47 people died in the United States from dog bites. The youngest victim, Ruth Flores, was just three weeks old when she was attacked by the husky.
At this point, fatalities and injuries resulting from encounters with dogs are considered one of the biggest public health in the world. Around 5 million Americans are bitten by dogs each year.
If this happens to you or your loved one, you should learn what to do in this unfortunate situation. Here you can find everything you need to know:
Report the accident
Most States require reporting dog attacks to the authorities and local animal control. The animal control will conduct the investigation and make sure the dog that attacked you has rabies vaccinations. It is a necessary step in order to identify the responsible party.
You may also want to find a dog bite lawyer in Las Vegas or any other place you live so that they can act on your behalf in court. To get justice, you should also identify witnesses. If you can’t do it yourself, ask a friend or relative to help you out.
Ideally, you should write their names and contact numbers. Also, try to identify the dog owner right after the dog attack.
More than that, find people who are willing to testify in court that that dog has bitten in the past. This information will help you to win a court case.
Another important thing is to document the bite wound. To do so, you can take a photo (it’s better than thousands of words). Feel free to take photos during the entire healing process. You may also want to ask your doctor to confirm your medical injury.
In case you are contacted by representatives of the dog owner, avoid discussing settlement with them. The insurance companies will always try to give less than the injured party deserves to get. That’s why your lawyer should do all the talking for you.
If you can’t afford to hire a lawyer, at least make sure to contact lawyer groups so that they can do a free case evaluation.
Seek immediate medical care
Your health should be a priority. That’s why you need to seek immediate medical care right after the attack. The thing is that dog bite wounds are very serious in most cases. You should be aware of the fact that even the smallest wounds may result in permanent scarring and infections.
Only your doctor can clean your wound properly and sew it up if needed. Dog bite wounds can lead to “staph” infection (that’s when MRSA – staphylococcus bacteria enters the wound). Needless to say, it can be lethal if not properly treated on time.
Another reason to visit your doctor as soon as possible is the fact that dogs spread rabies. In fact, they are the main source of rabies transmission worldwide. Only early treatment can help you to prevent the effects of scarring. Ignorance can lead to undesired consequences.
Before you get to the doctor, place a clean towel in order to stop the bleeding. You need to keep the injured area elevated. Consider washing the bite with water and applying a sterile bandage. To prevent the infection, make sure to apply antibiotic ointment. These are the things you can do at home on your own. However, going to the doctor is a must in this kind of situation.
Your doctor might want to ask you a few questions about what has happened. They will ask you about the dog and dog owner and whether you provoked the dog somehow.
Also, you will have to answer questions regarding your health conditions. People with diabetes and liver disease have a greater risk of getting infections.
The bottom line
The number of fatal dog attacks in the USA has been going up. The yearly average was 17 in the 1980s and 1990s; in the past 10 years (2006 to 2015, inclusive) the average has been 35. ” -states Sam Dordulian, a dog bite injury lawyer at Dordulian Law Group.
After being attacked by a dog, you should go to the hospital as soon as possible. Consider washing the wound with water and applying antibiotic ointment in order to prevent the infection. Ask your friend to identify witnesses and the dog owner right after the attack. Their statements will help you to win the court case.