The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that more than 4.5 million dog bites occur each year throughout the U.S. Injuries that can occur as the result of a dog bite or attack include:
- Severe cuts and puncture wounds
- Crushing injuries and broken bones
- Amputations and torn muscles or tendons
- Head and facial injuries
- Psychological trauma, as the result of the attack
Even in situations where injuries appear minor, victims should get treatment to assess the risk of rabies and to prevent infection. The CDC reports that roughly one out of every five dog bite victims suffer infections that have the potential to be severe and even life-threatening. When you suffer injuries from a dog attack, contact a Houston, TX dog bite lawyer to understand what compensation you may be eligible for.
What should I do if a dog bite occurs?
If you or someone you care about suffers a dog bite injury, it is important to take the following steps:
- Notify local law enforcement so an accident report can be filed
- Attempt to identify the dog’s owner and get their personal contact information
- Seek medical care for your injuries, regardless of their severity
- Inform animal control services in the municipality the attack occurred in, so the dog can be isolated and assessed.
Dog owners can be held liable for any injuries their animal causes, particularly if they were unleashed or roaming neighborhood streets unattended. Most dog bites happen in homes and among dogs the victim is familiar with. In these situations, the homeowner’s insurance policy may cover any damages you suffer.
What types of damages can a dog bite victim recover?
In addition to medical expenses, you may also be entitled to receive financial compensation for lost wages if you were unable to work because of the injury, pain, suffering, emotional anguish, scarring, or disfigurement. Depending on the severity of the bite, you may need future medical treatments and it is not uncommon for victims of severe attacks to need mental health therapy to help deal with the trauma of the event.
Dogs enjoy the reputation for being our best friends, providing companionship along with protection against intruders. Many people think of their four-legged pal as a member of their family, but the fact is that even the most mild-mannered dog can turn aggressive. Dog bite injuries are a serious concern in Texas, and it is not only large breeds that can cause major damage. Even a smaller dog’s bite can cause permanent scarring, in addition to exposing the victim to the risk of infection. A dog bite lawyer in Houston, TX can help victims of dog bites get the compensation they deserve.
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If you or a loved one has been bitten or attacked by a dog, contact John K. Zaid & Associates to meet with a seasoned Houston, TX dog bite lawyer and find out what legal options you may have.