Dog bites are more common than you may think and cause many severe injuries and tragic deaths every year in the U.S.
According to statistics, more than 4.5 million Americans are bit by dogs every year across the nation. Sadly, more than 42 individuals were tragically killed as a result of a dog bite or attack in 2020, reports DogsBite.org.
As a result of these dog bites, many people require medical attention and end up being hospitalized with severe injuries. A report published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that almost 370,000 people were treated for dog bite-related injuries in 2001.
Have you or a loved one suffered a dog bite injury? Don’t let another day go by without speaking to an experienced Los Angeles dog bite injury lawyer at Adamson Ahdoot LLP. We can discuss the details of your case and determine who may be held responsible for the expenses associated with your injuries. Call our office right now to schedule a free consultation.
How Often Do Dogs Bite in California?
More than 40% of the state’s households own at least one dog, reports the Humane America Animal Foundation. But how often do these dogs bite? According to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), over 50,000 animal bites were reported to local health departments and animal control agencies in 2011.
Not all of these bites were inflicted by dogs, but a state study done over the course of a four-year period shows almost 77% of animal bites were attributed to domestic dogs. Data collected by local state agencies in 2011 reveal that pit bull terriers were the most frequently reported breed to bite. German shepherd/shepherd mix and Chihuahuas were the second and third most likely types of breeds to bite, reports the state’s data.
Who is Most Likely to be bitten by a Dog?
Sadly, children between the ages of 1 and 6 are the most likely to be a victim of a dog bite in California, reports the CDPH. And the dogs who bite are most likely to be the family pet or at least a dog familiar with the victim. Statistics from the Journal of Pediatric Surgery reveal that more than half (53%) of dogs who bit belonged to the patient’s immediate or extended family.
“Pediatric dog bites span a wide range of ages, frequently require operative intervention, and can cause severe morbidity.” – The Journal of Pediatric Surgery
What are the Most Common Types of Injuries Suffered After a Dog Bite?
Despite being “man’s best friend,” dogs by nature are pack animals who can easily misinterpret physical and auditory signals from other animals and humans. When dogs bite, more than just the bite can inflict injury.
If a toddler is attacked by a larger dog, the dog may knock the child down in the process – causing more than just a bite injury. In other cases, dog attack victims may suffer secondary injuries from the initial bite like infection or loss of a limb.
Other types of injuries sustained by dog bite victims include:
- Back injuries
- Neck injuries
- Cuts and lacerations
- Bruises and contusions
- Head injuries
- Concussions and brain injuries
- Soft tissue damage
- Scarring and puncture wounds
- Wrongful death
Understanding California’s Dog Bite Laws
Unlike other states who impose a “one bite rule,” the state of California places responsibility on an owner of a dog regardless of whether or not the dog bit before. In many states, the owner may only be held liable for a dog bite injury if the dog bit before or showed violent tendencies prior to the incident. In California, an owner may be held responsible even if the dog did not bite before or act violently prior to the attack.
There are some exceptions to the state’s “strict liability” law, such as:
The injury sustained was not a bite. For example: if a dog attacked and you suffered a head injury as a result of being knocked over, you will have to prove the owner acted negligently.
The dog owner was not present. For example: if you are filing a lawsuit against a dog sitter, you must prove the dog sitter (the defendant) was at-fault for the dog bite.
As you can see, even with a strict liability law, it’s not as easy to navigate the legal process as it may seem. Many law firms back down to the demands of opposing legal teams before securing their clients the actual compensation deserved because negotiations “get difficult.” At Adamson Ahdoot LLP, we have an excellent track record of standing firm for our clients so they can get the help they need for injury expenses.
To ensure a successful case outcome, our firm will:
- Talk to eyewitnesses to testify to the defendant’s behavior and/or circumstances of the incident
- Carefully analyze medical records to ensure past, current, and future injury expenses are accurately calculated
- Handle negotiations with insurance companies looking to minimize injury costs
What Types of Damages Can I Collect Compensation For?
Victims of dog bites may be compensated for many types of damages, such as:
- Surgery and hospitalization
- Physical therapy
- Doctor visits
- Nursing care
- Loss of income
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Emotional distress
- Physical suffering
- Property damage
- Other types of damages
Getting the true value of your claim can be challenging without the help of a skilled dog bite attorney. Our legal team has over 100 years of combined legal experience – let us put our vast forensic and medical expert network to work, so you get the full amount you’re entitled to.
Do I Need a Dog Bite Injury Attorney?
We’re here to fight for you and with us in your corner, your chances of getting a fair settlement are much higher. Why risk your one chance to be made “whole” and move towards a brighter future? If you suffered an injury after being bit by a dog, get in touch with our Los Angeles law firm right away to discuss your legal options.
We offer free, no-obligation consultations at our office located in the heart of downtown LA. You can reach our office at all hours by simply placing a call or by sending us a contact form. Act now before state deadlines stop you from taking legal action.