In the State of California, pet owners are responsible for injuries caused by their pet.

Dogs can have positive effects on the lives of their owners. These animals provide companionship, influence an active lifestyle, and they can even be trained to detect a person’s oncoming epileptic seizure. It comes as no surprise that dogs make popular pets in the country, with more than 38 percent of U.S. households estimated to have one or more dogs as family pets.

While dogs offer an abundance of benefits, they can cause serious injuries when they bite or attack a person. Unfortunately, a majority of dog bites are preventable, but they continue to occur as a result of pet owner negligence. Historically, dogs who attack people usually do so when they have a history of being viscous.

Dogs of all sizes can cause severe injuries, and these injuries can lead to a lifetime of pain and emotional trauma. The State of California recognizes this, and offers affected victims the opportunity to seek monetary compensation for their grievances.

Obtain Compensation After a Dog Bite Incident

Dog bites vary from state to state, but California holds dog owners strictly responsible for injuries their pet causes another person. In most cases, dog owners cannot avoid accountability after a person has been bitten by their pet. Nonetheless, dog bite cases can be complicated. When filing a dog bite claim, it is important to speak to a well-versed attorney to ensure full compensation is obtained.

For more than a decade, the Law Offices of Attorney Justin H. King has successfully and professionally served those who have been injured as a result of a vicious dog bite. The firm understands that because most dog bite claims are covered by the pet owner’s homeowner’s insurance coverage, these insurers will do all that is possible to avoid paying a fair settlement. Attorney King works aggressively and tirelessly to ensure the highest compensation is obtained. After a serious dog bite, consider obtaining the legal support of the Law Offices of Attorney Justin H. King. Call (909) 297-5001 or fill out the contact form to obtain your free consultation today.

California’s Dog Bite Law

The State of California has a law known as a “strict liability statute”, which holds dog owners strictly responsible when their pet bites a person, regardless of whether the dog had shown prior signs of aggression. There are very few exceptions to California’s strict dog bite law. In most cases, dog owners will be held financially accountable when a person has been injured by their dog. Nevertheless, the following exceptions could be upheld: The dog bite victim provoked the dog prior to being bitten, The dog bite victim was unlawfully in private property when the incident took place, or The dog was performing military or police service at the time of the attack.

Establishing Fault After a Dog Bite

Dog bite cases can become challenging when it is difficult to prove the dog’s ownership. As a result, it is important for dog bite victims to collect as much corroborate evidence as possible at the time of the incident in order to build a strong case. Any evidence that can prove the dog’s ownership can benefit the case.

After being attacked by a dog, it is important to retain the contact information of the dog owner or dog handler. Furthermore, many dog bite cases involve others who witnessed the incident taking place. It is also important to collect their information as third-party testimonials help corroborate how the incident took place.

When the police have been called to the scene, a copy of the police report should be obtained to make sure the account of the attack is as accurate as possible. When the dog attack does not warrant police presence, it may be beneficial to collect video surveillance from surrounding establishments.

Catastrophic Dog Bite Injuries

Dog bites can lead to a wide-range of injuries. The following are some of the most devastating injuries that could result in long-term pain, emotional trauma, and costly medical expenses.

  1. Contracting Infections and Other Diseases

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, any dog, including puppies can carry harmful germs that could make people sick. Germs from dogs can lead to a variety of illnesses, including:

  • Brucellosis – A bacterial disease that can cause flu-like symptoms.
  • Campylobacteriosis An infection where children are at higher risk of contracting.
  • Capnocytophaga – A bacteria that lives in the mouths of dogs and can result in mild symptoms, such as fever or vomiting but it can also cause serious medical complications, such as gangrene, blood infection, or kidney failure
  • Rabies – This is a deadly neurological disease that is caused by a virus which usually spreads through the bites of infected animals.
  • Tetanus – This usually does not come from the animal’s saliva, but instead from the skin flora of the person who was bitten.
  1. Crushing Injuries

Large dogs have the potential to cause crushing injuries because of their large jaws. The amount of force exerted from their jaws can break, crush, or fracture a person’s bones. Once the dog bite reaches the bone, it is likely that the dog will also injure the victim’s surrounding soft tissues and muscles.

  1. Nerve Damage

Because of a dog’s razor sharp teeth and strong bite, a dog bite can cause serious nerve damage. Nerve damage is not always immediately apparent, but its effects can be long-lasting. Depending on the severity of the attack, a dog bite involving nerve damage can incite the following challenges: Permanent pain or sensitivity in the affected areas, Numbness or paralysis in the area that was bitten, The injury can affect day-to-day activities, and The injury can lead to disability that can affect the ability to return to work.

  1. Scars

A serious dog attack can result in severe injuries that leave scars behind. Depending on the scar tissue developed, years of corrective surgeries may be required to lessen their appearance and to improve the affected skin tissue. If a dog bite is in a particularly noticeable area, the scar can take an emotional toll on the victim.

  1. Emotional Trauma

After a dog bite, most people become immediately concerned with their physical health. Most dog bites, however, are traumatic events that can have serious emotional consequences. The severity of the emotional trauma can vary, but many dog bite victims will develop the following after a serious dog bite:

  • Depression,
  • Anxiety,
  • Avoidance,
  • Guilt,
  • Recurring nightmares, and
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  1. Death

Death is not uncommon in dog bite cases, especially cases involving small children. Sadly, children are at  high risk of losing their lives when mauled by a large dog. According to the CDC, children are not only more likely to be bitten by a dog, but when they are, their injuries tend to be more severe. Unfortunately, there have been cases where a baby or infant’s head was completely crushed during a dog attack. According to a study conducted by the CDC, dog bites make up roughly 12 percent of infant and baby deaths in the United States.

Contact an Experienced Dog Bite Litigator

Dog bite injuries can present a plethora of grievances that can cause a lifetime of despair. Depending on the severity of the injury, it is possible to undergo long-term medical care, lose the ability to return to work, and even be permanently disabled. If you or someone you love was injured by a dog, discuss your case with a well-versed personal injury litigator who will help you establish liability against the pet owner.

For more than a decade, the Law Offices of Attorney Justin H. King has triumphed on behalf of those who have been bitten by a dog. Dog bite cases are complex and often require significant investigation; speak to an attorney who will ensure you recover the highest amount of compensation possible. Consider scheduling a no-obligation with the Law Offices of Attorney Justin H. King by calling (909) 297-5001 or filling out the contact form today.

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