Being bitten by a dog is no laughing matter. While most people feel their pet or domestic animal is a source of joy for their family, an accidental dog bite can turn a good afternoon into a very bad day. And while no one brings a pet into a situation with the hope that they bite someone, accidents do happen and in the end animals are animals.
Unfortunately, in addition to the actual pain of a dog bite there are legal ramifications to consider. In many instances, the owner or caretaker of a dog that bites a person can be held liable for the pain and suffering of the victim. And while some consider litigation in the event of a dog or animal bite to be unwarranted – accidents do happen after all – we feel that understanding and properly evaluating legal remedies is always in the victim’s best interest.
4 Things to Do When Bitten by a Dog
- Make a record of every detail – Record every detail you can remember either in a notebook or on your computer. Why? Because in a court of law every detail matters. Where did the dog come from? Was anyone else around to witness the incident? Did something provoke the dog? What time was it? What kind of dog was it? Color? Size? Even the smallest-seeming details can be a big deal if you are bitten by a dog.
- Take pictures of the bite or wound (and the dog if you can) – In the age of cellphones with cameras there is very little reason dog bite victims can’t take a photograph of the wound soon after the incident. Taking photos over the coming hours can also be instructive as bruising and swelling likely start to appear. Finally, if you can take a picture of the dog or animal itself then you should do so. Often the owner of a dog that has bitten someone will try to deny the dog was even at the alleged location of the attack. A photograph can help prove that the dog was indeed there and positively identify the animal.
- Visit a doctor – Far too often victims of dog bites think a small wound or a bite that doesn’t puncture the skin can be addressed at home. Don’t be naive; potentially harmful bacteria can live in the mouth of a dog and cause a small bite to turn into a serious infection if not properly treated. Take the time to visit a doctor not just for record-keeping on the severity of your injury but also to make sure you are properly treating the impacted area.
- Contact an attorney – As mentioned earlier, owners and caretakers of dogs and other animals have a responsibility to control them. If you are the victim of a dog bite then you should explore what remedies are at your disposal when it comes to holding that owner or caretaker accountable for their pet’s actions. A quality attorney can provide insight and information that will help you decide what course of legal action you want to pursue, if any at all.
Moving Forward with Proper Care and Legal Advice
Dogs and other animals can be controlled and it is the responsibility of the pet’s owner or caretaker to do exactly that. Letting a dog roam free or without proper supervision can be asking for trouble. Dogs sometimes bite people, children, or other animals which can lead to pain and emotional suffering for the victim and their family. At Torero Law we have a long history of securing justice for victims of dog bites. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a dog bite and needs assistance in considering your legal options, contact us for a free consultation. We would be happy to learn more about the incident and provide expert legal advice as to what comes next. Being bitten by a dog was bad enough…let Torero Law help it from getting worse.