Worst Mistakes to Make After a Dog Bite

Dog Bites & Injuries,Personal Injury On Thursday, April 11, 2024

You may think you will never become a victim of a dog attack, but thousands of these incidents occur every year. It is in your best interest to be prepared for a dog bite injury in case you or someone you know is ever targeted by a dog. This way, you can confidently take the right steps – and avoid the wrong ones – during a dog bite injury claim.

Not Seeking Medical Care

Dog bite injuries can result in serious health complications, including infections and dog-borne diseases such as rabies. It is critical to get professional medical care immediately after any dog bite injury, especially one that breaks the skin. Doctors can clean the wound and apply antibiotics to help prevent infection.

Prompt medical care can aid in your recovery, which is the most important thing, but it can also help during an insurance claim. The insurance company that receives your dog bite injury claim could try to use any delay in medical care against you to blame you for the extent of your injuries.

Failing to Document the Attack

Proper documentation of the dog bite injury and surrounding circumstances can help support your insurance claim or personal injury case. While you are still at the scene of the attack, do your best to gather the following information and evidence:

  • The date, time and location of the attack
  • The name of the pet owner
  • The pet owner’s phone number
  • The pet owner’s property insurance information
  • The dog breed and vaccination history
  • The names and phone numbers of any witnesses
  • A detailed description of events
  • Photographs of the dog and your injuries
  • Photographs of any property damage

If you cannot gather this information yourself, get a trusted friend or family member to do so for you. Continue taking photos of your injuries as they heal, and consider keeping an injury journal where you document how you feel day-to-day.

Not Reporting the Incident to Authorities

No dog bite injury is too minor to report to the authorities. In Connecticut, state law requires dog bite victims to report to a state, town or regional animal control officer in the place where the attack occurred. Contact your local animal control office to report the bite. This step is important for documenting the incident for insurance purposes, as well as to quarantine the dog to check for rabies.

In addition, reporting the attack gives your county important information about the dog’s history of viciousness. If a dog bites multiple people or causes serious injuries, animal control officials may visit the pet owner to enforce dangerous dog laws, such as muzzling the dog on walks. In severe cases, a case may be opened to decide the question of humanely euthanizing the dog.

Assuming the Owner Cannot Afford to Pay

Do not make the mistake of assuming the owner of the dog that bit you does not have the financial means to pay for your medical bills and losses. In many cases, pet owners have property insurance policies that cover harm caused by their pets. This means the pet owner most likely will not have to pay out of pocket for your losses.

Choosing Not to Hire a Lawyer for a Serious Dog Bite Injury

Dog bite injuries can be incredibly serious. If you or a loved one suffered moderate to severe injuries in a dog attack in Connecticut, do not make the mistake of handling your injury claim on your own. Do not trust the insurance company that is processing your claim; they will want to protect their own profits above all else. Instead, hire an experienced Wallingford dog bite lawyer to represent you to achieve the best possible results.

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