Many puncture wounds resulting from dog bites are not sutured at the hospital and often, emergency care may just result in cleaning the wounds and use of antibiotics but no major medical treatment, and many people are sometimes concerned that they won’t be able to receive compensation because the dog was at a park or in the street and not at home. However, the dog has an owner, and that owner in many cases has homeowner’s insurance that will cover damages caused by the dogs and the negligent handling and supervision of the dog, wherever it may be.
Often, people hesitate to bring a dog bite case because they know the dog’s owner and they don’t like the idea of bringing a lawsuit against someone they know. People need to understand that they won’t be looking to get money from that person, but their homeowner’s insurance, which why they have it in the first place.
What Happens to the Animal in a Dog Bite Case?
Sometimes the Animal Control Division of the government gets involved; depending on the extent of the injury, the likelihood of the dog biting again, or whether or not the dog had been vaccinated, they may decide to put the dog to sleep. In other cases, the dogs are returned to their owners, who are given a citation in many occurrences as well. Not all dogs are put down, as some believe.
What is the Step-by-Step Process to Follow After Suffering a Dog Attack?
Depending on the severity, of course someone who is injured by a dog bite should get to the emergency room immediately and contact police so that the dog can be quarantined and tested for rabies and to verify the dog has been vaccinated. If someone can photograph the dog, if the dog is captured by the police or by the animal control department, you should try to obtain the information that’s on the dog tag or the dog collar, and try to obtain the names of witnesses, so that you can prove the dog belonged to a certain owner and escaped from a certain house.
One of the major obstacles we as lawyers have is to prove that the owner actually owned the dog that caused the injury. You’d be surprised at how many owners say the biting dog isn’t theirs, or that it’s a stray. Seeking counsel and making sure you get the appropriate treatment, including plastic surgery, wound care or psychiatric counseling is always important. Many lawyers can help find psychiatrists willing to work in that area, or plastic surgeons who are willing to work in that area until the case is settled.
How Long Does a Dog Bite Case Usually Last?
Like many injury cases resulting from negligence, it can take anywhere from six months to two years, depending on the severity of the case. In cases involving young children, you may want to wait to bring the lawsuit until the child is older and you’re more certain of the scar revision surgeries that will be required, unless you have an expert who can testify as to the future medical care that will be required.
What Happens if a Person Gets Bit by a Stray Dog?
Those are sad cases; stray dogs do bite on occasion and unfortunately there is no one to blame for the mishandling of that particular dog, so it’s difficult to pursue a claim in that circumstance, since there’s just no money to be obtained. The best thing to do is report it to the authorities so the dog is put to sleep and doesn’t bite anyone else.
For more information on Top Misconceptions about Dog Bites, a free initial consultation is your best next step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling 713-333–7025 today.