If you get bit by someone’s dog, you bite back! Not literally though.
With dog bites on the rise all across the United States, and billions of dollars spent by Los Angeles residents to recover from dog bites every year, what should you do if you get it? A few days ago, a dog – German shepherd, to be precise – was shot by a Los Angeles police officer for attacking three people.
Dog bites are not rare in the U.S., where the Centers for Disease Control estimate about 4.5 million Americans get bit by dogs annually. Some dog bites require thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars for medical bills to recover from injuries, and some dog bites can be fatal.
According to the CDC, dog bites kill an estimated up to 20 Americans every year. Dog attacks in California have been on the rise, with statistics showing that the most vicious dogs reside in the state.
In fact, California holds the #1 place in the number of dog bite claims, with over $14.7 million paid by the insurance industry to cover California’s dog assaults in 2013 alone.
What do state laws say about dog bites in Los Angeles?
While Los Angeles residents have long been pushing lawmakers to ban certain dog breeds from the streets of LA, state laws in California only penalize the owners of vicious dogs.
Laws regarding dog bites are constantly changing in California, which is why it’s vital to consult with a well-versed dog bite attorney to be up to date with today’s regulations and seek maximum compensation for your pain and injuries.
Unlike some states and cities in the U.S., dog owners in California can be held liable for a dog bite even without providing solid evidence of negligence.
That means you can make dog owners bite their nails if their dog happens to attack you. In fact, if you know what legal buttons to push, the owner of the dog that attacked you can be held liable even if he/she has evidence that the dog had never bitten anyone else or exhibited aggressive behavior before.
Guide: What to do after you get bit by a dog in Los Angeles?
Dog bites occur every 75 seconds in our country. What are the chances that you or your children won’t get bit the next time you go outdoors?
In fact, statistics show that more than half of kids bitten are under age 14. Not to mention that the average cost of a dog bite-related hospital stay was estimated to be over $18,000 in 2008.
So what should you do if you get bit by a dog in Los Angeles?
- No matter if it’s a stray dog or someone else’s dog, call 911 and report a dog bite to seek immediate medical help.
- If the dog owner is non-cooperative, ask people nearby to watch him/her with you while you wait for the police’s arrival and prevent him/her from fleeing the scene (it’s best if these people witnessed the incident so they could prove you were bitten by the dog);
- If the dog owner is cooperative, take down his/her name, phone number, and address;
- In a hospital, treat injuries and go through a complete medical check-up to make sure you weren’t infected;
- Contact our dog bite lawyer to navigate you through the whole process of your particular case and obtain the maximum compensation for your suffering and injuries.
Note: California’s state law says that dog owners may be forced to compensate for your injuries, existing and future medical bills, loss of wage and capacity, plastic surgery (if necessary), punitive damages along with pain and suffering damages.