Doug / 02-28-2011 / Newsletter

I’ve Been Bitten by a Dog – Now What?

A dog’s bark is not always worse than its bite. Some dog bites can end up being more than a just a minor laceration. They can cause serious injuries and even rabies. If bitten by a dog, there are steps you can take to minimize your injury and protect your legal rights after a dog bite.

After a Dog Bite

If possible, try to find out the dog’s owner. You can then see if the animal is current on its shots for rabies. If a stray dog bit you, you are facing the likelihood of a course of rabies treatment. In any event, seek medical attention.

If you have a facial wound, ask the emergency room doctor is there a plastic surgeon available. A plastic surgeon has experience in stitching wounds on the face for minimal scarring. Follow the doctor’s advice for keeping the wound and dressing clean. Over the next several weeks, watch for symptoms of fever, headache, fatigue and general pain and discomfort. If those occur, see a doctor for rabies.

Take photographs of your wound and any torn clothing. Get the contact information of any witnesses to the dog bite. It is a good idea to write down the facts of the incident while they are still fresh in your memory. If you are able to identify the dog and its owner, see if the owner is insured. Get all the insurance information as you would after a car accident. Do not discuss settlement, money or fault with the owner.

Next, protect your legal rights by consulting with an Orlando personal injury attorney who is experienced with dog bite cases and recovery. Do not wait to call a lawyer, as there is only a specific amount of time in most jurisdictions before you can file a claim against the dog owner. In Florida, a dog owner can be liable even if there is no actual contact between the dog and victim. If you are merely running from the dog and you trip and suffer injury, the dog owner can be liable.

As a dog bite victim, you are entitled to recovery for damages and losses including medical bills and emotional stress. Your attorney can also deal with the owner’s insurance company and the local authorities responsible for the dog’s fate. Dog bite attorneys generally offer a free consultation. Contact an Orlando personal injury lawyer after your dog bite.

Disclaimer: All verdicts and settlements listed here are gross amounts before deductions for attorney fees and costs. Past results do not guarantee similar results in the future. Most cases result in a lower recovery. It should not be assumed that your case will have as beneficial a result. Before choosing a lawyer, ask for written information about the lawyer's legal qualifications and experience.