After you have been attacked by a dog, you need to speak with a canine attack injury lawyer Tampa, FL turns to from Jeff Murphy Law. Unfortunately, “man’s best friend” is not always so friendly and one bite from a dog can cause you to lose a lot of blood or it can get incredibly infected. Just because you have a dog of your own or have been around dogs your whole life does not mean that all dogs are well-trained and will not attack you. Unfortunately, this kind of event can lead to serious physical injuries and long-term emotional scars. If you have been injured by a dog attacking you and are unsure of the next steps regarding treatment and seeking compensation, do not hesitate to call our office.
What steps should I take after a dog attack?
We understand that you may be dealing with many emotions after a dog attack, especially fear. After you have been bitten, there are a few things you should do if you are able.
- Get Help. If you are able to drive yourself to a local emergency room or hospital, you should go. If you cannot leave, call 9-1-1 or try to find someone nearby who can call 9-1-1 for you. Many people do not realize the severity of dog bites. If the wound does not seem life-threatening, still seek help from a doctor.
- Report the Incident. You may think you have done this by going to a medical professional, but you should tell the proper authorities. This means reporting the dog attack to animal control or other local authorities. Especially when you are seeking compensation after an attack, you want to make sure it was well-documented.
- Take Pictures. You want to be able to provide solid evidence to your dog bite Lawyer Tampa, FL relies on. This means you should take pictures immediately following the attack and the progression of the wounds while you heal.
- Contact an Attorney. When it comes to getting compensation for your injuries, filing a claim may be harder than you think. You want to make sure you have someone who understands dog attack laws and who can help you when you want to get the full extent of compensation.
Families in Florida and across the country love their pets. According to the American Pet Products Association (APPA), almost 70 percent of households in the US own at least one pet. That comes out to approximately 85 million families. More than 60 million of those families own dogs. And while many dogs are friendly in nature, canine attack injury lawyers Tampa FL families trust from Jeff Murphy Law know that dogs can attack for various reasons, including feeling provoked, threatened, protecting puppies, or from being startled.
According to studies conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), almost 4.5 million people suffer dog bites each year. Dog bites can be quite serious, with approximately 900,000 of those bites requiring medical attention. There are many complications that can arise from a bite, with wounds ranging from minor to serious. In some cases, the dog attack can even result in fatal injuries.
A dog bite lawyer Tampa, FL clients recommend has worked on many dog bite cases where the victims have been left with significant scarring from the attack. There is also the risk of permanent damage to muscles and nerves that cannot be repaired by surgery, as well as emotional scars victims are left with. Many dog attack victims are left with a lifetime of fear of dogs, even being scared of leaving their homes because they are afraid they will be attacked again.
The following are some of the injuries and complications from those injuries that victims of dog attacks may suffer:
- Nerve damage
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Dog Owner Responsibility
Under Florida law, dog owners are responsible for their pets’ actions. The law requires dog owners to make sure the dog is secured on their property at all times and if the owner is taking the dog off his or her property, then the dog must be properly leashed. If a dog attacks or bites a victim, the dog owner is liable for the victim’s medical expenses, loss of income while they recover, pain and suffering, emotional anguish, scarring, disfigurement, and more.
A dog owner cannot argue as a defense that they did not know their dog was aggressive.
There are limited exceptions where the dog owner would not be responsible for their animal’s actions:
- The victim was trespassing on the owner’s property when the dog attacked.
- The victim was threatening the dog owner or other person when the dog attacked.
- The victim was injuring, abusing, or threatening the dog or puppies when the dog attacked.
Let Our Personal Injury Law Firm Get You the Compensation You Deserve
If you or a loved one has suffered a dog attack or dog bite that was unprovoked, you should be entitled to your medical expenses and other losses the injuries have caused. Contact Jeff Murphy Law to find out what legal recourse you may have against the dog owner. Call our office today to schedule a free consultation with one of our dedicated Tampa FL canine attack injury lawyers.