You've been bitten by someone else's dog, now what do you do? Read this guide to learn what to do about a dog bite injury.
Over one-third of U.S. households own a pet dog. We're a nation of dog lovers.
And yet, not every dog owner is a good one. Every year, there are up to 4.7 million dog bites.
Not all of these incidents cause any injury. Less than 20 percent of dog bite incidents result in a medical emergency. Some even cause death.
If you have a dog bite injury, you need to know what to do next. Check out our guide on what to do if you have been bitten by a dog.
Let's get started!
1. Request the Name and Contact of the Dog Owner
You never know when you're going to get bitten by someone else's dog.
As soon as the incident occurs, you should request the name and contact information for the dog owner.
If the dog owner refuses, you should gather any information you can to identify the dog and the owner.
Without the information you need to identify the dog owner, you may find it difficult to file your lawsuit. This could undermine your ability to receive compensation, which you may be entitled to.
If your injury is severe, you should make sure you act swiftly to deal with your bite wounds as well. So, don't waste too much time sharing information with the dog owner.
Step 2 - Take Pictures of Everything
Gather as much evidence of the dog attack as possible. If you cannot get any name or contact of the dog owner, the photographs could be extremely valuable.
Take photos of the bite wounds. Your damaged clothes and the scene of the incident should all be photographed.
If you can also get a photograph of the dog owner and dog itself, this could help you to track them down later.
Remember, your dog bite may heal over time. You should take a photograph of your injury before it's too late.
Step 3 - Wash the Bite Wound
Immediately after you have been bitten by someone else's dog, you should apply pressure to the wound. This can be any clean cloth.
As soon as possible, you should apply pressure to remove any bacteria which is in the wound. Then, wash the wound with soap and warm water.
Step 4 - Apply Anti-biotic Cream
Once you have washed the wound, you should apply an antibiotic cream. This can be purchased from any pharmacy over the counter.
You should also wrap a bandage around the wound. Ensure that the bandage is clean before you use it.
Keep the bandage on your wound until you can receive medical attention. You should change it two to three times per day to keep it clean.
Step 5 - Seek Medical Attention
That's all you can do at home. As soon as you get the chance, you should seek medical attention as well.
Show the medical professional the injury and carefully explain how the incident happened. The doctor should clean the wound once again.
The doctor will also make a judgment about whether the wound is infected. They could prescribe you antibiotics or an ointment to deal with the infection.
If the injury is especially bad, you may require stitches. And, if there is an infection, you could also get a booster shot.
Step 6 - Report to the Police
If you have already handled the medical problems, it's time to report the incident to the police. You may also want to contact animal control services as well.
Remember, it's not only about what happened to you. You also want to help prevent the dog from attacking someone else.
Report the dog attack to the police to gather evidence for the lawsuit as well. If you decide to sue the dog owner, you'll need to be able to prove that you reported the incident to the police immediately after.
Step 7 - Do Not Dispose of Any Evidence
You may have been wearing clothing which has been damaged during the dog bite. This is also evidence.
Ensure you don't dispose of any clothing. If the dog bite caused you to bleed, this is especially important.
Step 8 - Keep Any Medical Bills
If the dog bite resulted in you requiring medical attention, then you should keep any medical bills. This includes prescription costs.
This is important evidence if you're going to recover the compensation from the dog owner for the attack.
Step 9 - Make Note of What Happened
Can you remember everything that happened during your dog attack?
You may not be able to recall everything days or weeks after the incident occurred. That's why it's so helpful to write down the facts before you forget anything.
Include as much detail about the event as possible. This can help you make your case for compensation effectively.
10. Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer
You should contact a personal injury lawyer who can help secure the compensation through a lawsuit. It is not easy to execute a lawsuit without the support of a lawyer.
You should make sure you hire an attorney who knows about the dog bite laws in your location. This can help you ensure that your legal rights are upheld.
Have you never hired a lawyer before? You should know some tips for choosing the best personal injury attorney.
Have You Got a Dog Bite Injury?
If you have been injured in a dog attack, you should contact a personal injury lawyer to help you with your case.
You shouldn't have to pay for your medical bills yourself. You are entitled to compensation for the consequences of the dog attack.
Do you have dog bite injury? Leave a comment below to share your experience with us.