As one of the most popular pets in the United States, it can be hard to fathom how a dog bite can be severe and cause problems. However, each year, more than 4.5 million Americans are bitten by dogs, and of these, nearly 800,000 have to seek medical attention. Most of the time, these attacks leave no lasting damage, but sometimes they leave behind serious injuries that require extensive medical care and rehabilitation.
In many cases, victims of dog bites in Northern Virginia choose to seek compensation from the owners of the animals for the injuries they suffered. In a successful case, you can expect to receive damages for your medical bills as well as for the pain and suffering inflicted on you. In some cases, punitive damages may also be awarded to punish the owners and punish other irresponsible pet owners to take better care of their animals. When Northern Virginians need help with a dog bite case, they call Williams Stone, PC to resolve their case.
What Are The Different Types Of Dog Bites?
There are several different types of dog bites. The most common is a bite on the arm or leg, leaving wounds that are not very serious. More serious dog bites involve the head, neck, or chest area, and multiple dogs attacking at once can lead to more severe wounds that require extensive medical attention.
In some cases, dog bites leave permanent scarring, both physical and emotional. While most acts of dog aggression are unintentional, there are some cases when a dog acts aggressively towards a person or another animal.
What Should You Do After A Dog Bite?
Northern Virginians who are bitten by dogs should seek medical attention immediately, even if the wound does not seem serious. The bite should be thoroughly cleaned, and antibiotics administered to prevent infection. A tetanus shot may also be necessary, depending on the severity of the wound.
In many cases, a series of rabies shots will also be necessary to prevent this disease from causing complications. If the dog has been quarantined, your medical team will contact animal authorities to evaluate the health of the dog and determine if it can be released or if there is still a risk of it attacking again.
What Compensation Exists For Dog Bites?
If a dog has bitten you, you have the right to take legal action against the owner to seek compensation for your injuries. In many cases, more than one person can be held liable for your damages. For example, suppose the owner of the dog knew that it had a tendency to react aggressively, but still allowed children or older adults around it. In that case, you may be able to hold both the owner and the person in charge of the dog at the time of the incident liable.
Common forms of compensation for dog bites include:
- Pain and suffering. While dog bite victims rarely die from their injuries, they can suffer for years after the incident. The pain and emotional trauma associated with a dog bite can lead to physical and mental repercussions. Physical consequences include infections, scars, and permanent injuries, while emotional consequences can result in fear of dogs that impact the quality of life.
- Property damage. When a dog causes serious property damage, such as tearing up carpeting or breaking down walls, the owner should be held liable.
- Medical bills. The cost of medical treatment, including surgery and rehabilitation for dog bite victims, is often expensive. The owner of the dog should cover these expenses.
- Punitive damages. When owners of dogs make deliberate decisions to keep aggressive dogs, they should be punished to prevent other owners from doing the same.
Why Should I Hire A Dog Bite Attorney?
An experienced dog bite attorney can help victims of any type of dog attack by investigating the incident and determining the best course of action for filing a claim. They can also negotiate with insurance companies to get the most money possible for your claim. The risk of representing yourself in a dog bite case is that you may not adequately protect your legal rights, leaving yourself open to being under-compensated for the damages that you have suffered.
Contact Williams Stone, PC Today
If you or someone you know has been the victim of a dog bite accident, it’s time to take action. Dog bites can be traumatic, leading to painful, difficult recovery. If you want the help of a dog bite lawyer in Northern Virginia, look no further than Williams Stone, PC today. Our experienced legal team will take the time to listen to your story and help you understand your legal rights. Contact us today to consult and plan your next steps forward.