No one knows the exact reason why a dog attacks, but they may feel threatened, have been abused or encouraged to be aggressive, or they may have rabies. Whatever the case, a dog attack or dog bite is a terrible situation that can harm the victim on a physical and emotional level, often resulting in the dog being put to death for the attack or bite. For all involved, it can be an emotional experience that requires careful attention and sound legal advice.
According to DogBite.org, nearly 1,000 people on a daily basis in the U.S. need emergency treatment for a dog bite. A study that looked at U.S. & Canada dog attack deaths and maiming between 1982 and 2014 found that 86 percent of attacks lead to bodily harm, 86 percent lead to maiming, and 76 percent result in death. Of these dog attacks, 89 percent are adult victims while 11 percent are children. Many dog bite injuries have occurred right here in Creve Coeur, Missouri, and have led to serious consequences.
This page provides information on the types of physical and emotional injuries and scars that can result from dog bite injuries as well as how you can get legal assistance if you or a family member has been a victim of a dog bite.
Types of Physical Dog Bites
Depending on the type of dog, the length of biting, and the place on the body, the following types of physical dog bite injuries are possible for children and adults:
- Abrasions and lacerations
- Tissue loss
- Fractured or broken bones
- Sprains and strains
- Injuries from being crushed
- Nerve damage
- Infections, including rabies and cellulitis
Dog bite injuries can happen all over the body, but much of the reported injuries are found on the face and limbs — including fractures to the jaw and nose areas.
The damages from dog bite injuries can be much more severe when a dog bites a baby, child, or senior citizen because their bodies are much more susceptible to their injuries. Additionally, they have a more difficult time getting away from the dog that is biting them. This can lead to significantly worse dog bite injuries. This, in no way, undermines the risk to adults who have also been known to sustain significant damage from dog bite injuries as well as died from such injuries.
Treatment of Dog Bite Injuries
When a child or adult is treated for their dog bite injuries, a physician most often starts with an examination to see the extent of damage while also working to clean the bite area to minimize the risk of infection as best as possible. The wound is cleaned very carefully, which can be painful because it often involves the use of a needle and catheter to get into a deep wound to clean the internal tissue of dog saliva and any germs associated with it. A tetanus shot may also be administered to address any potential for the presence of rabies.
Although most dog bite injuries may require stitches or bone setting, there are some that need significantly more medical care in the form of orthopedic surgery as well as plastic surgery or reconstructive surgery because the bite was so severe.
Physical and Emotional Scars Related to Dog Bite Injuries
Following the initial injuries sustained from dog bites, physical and emotional scars may remain for a long time after the initial dog bite injury. This includes physical deformity and disability as well as symptoms related to post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) that forever change a child or adult after their dog bite injuries.
The emotional effects for the dog bite victim can involve anxiety, fear, and depression that can last for months, years, or even a lifetime. They may never enjoy being around dogs and find themselves easily panicked or upset in their presence. What was once “man’s best friend” is now their enemy.
To try and help them recover, these dog bite victims may have to spend time and money seeking treatment from a mental health practitioner to get over their fear, anxiety, and depression. Some may get therapy from a psychologist while others may require medication provided by a psychiatrist to help them recover from the emotional scars left by the dog bite injury.
Even worse, disabilities and deformities can create other emotional scars affecting the victim’s social life and interactions with others. They may have to endure people staring and asking questions and they may even become the victims of social discrimination and be alienated.
Costs of Dog Bite Injuries
Then there is the expense incurred from being a victim of a dog bite injury. All these treatments for the physical damage and emotional scars quickly add up. While most of the cost can be covered by health insurance, much of the mental health treatment may not be included and will come out of the dog bite victim’s pocket. Losing a large portion of your bank account just for being a victim of someone else’s dog only makes the experience that much worse.
Legal Assistance for Dog Bites
No one should have to experience a dog bite, but as the statistics show dog bites happen daily and in large measures, often because pet owners are not responsible about how they maintain or lock up their animals. Of course, dogs are fairly smart and can quite often break free, even from the owner with the best intentions. When this happens and a dog bites a child or adult, there has to be recourse for the physical and emotional damage that has been done.
Through our Creve Coeur, MO, legal firm, we have seen, heard, and participated in many dog bite injury cases. That experience has helped us become an expert in assisting those of you who have personal injury claims related to dog bite injuries.
The legal team at the Finney Law Office, LLC has delivered proven results for numerous dog bite injury victims, helping them get compensated for their medical health costs as well as ensuring that they get awarded additional money for the trauma they have suffered. While no amount of money can help physical disfigurement, disability, or emotional scars disappear, the additional financial assistance can balance the scales of justice and potentially help more dog owners become more responsible with their pets.
From the free consultation to the courtroom, the lawyers at Finney Law Office, LLC will help you get on the road to recovery by delivering the legal and financial assistance you need. Contact us now to set up your free consultation.