DOG BITES & Animal Attacks

We love animals! But we don’t like their bites… With many dog owners living in Southern California, it isn’t a surprise that dog bites are the most common types of animal attacks to occur. Although we tend to view dogs as friendly, loyal animals, they still can cause serious harm – whether the dog is big or small. Dog bites can leave permanent injuries, nerve damage, or other emotional and physical scars causing pain, fear, and anxiety for the rest of one’s life in some cases. Regardless of whether the dog or other animal has shown aggressive behavior in the past or not, the owner is still responsible for their pet’s behavior.

Under California law, “The owner of any dog is liable [legally responsible] for the damages suffered by any person who is bitten by the dog while in a public place or lawfully in a private place, including the property of the owner of the dog, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.” California Civil Code 3342.

If you have been attacked by a dog or other animal the best thing to do is to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney right away – before evidence gets stale or disappears, and witnesses become difficult to locate and interview. We can help you in determining the most beneficial course of action to take for your unique situation. Our firm offers a free case evaluation where we will provide answers to your questions and explain your legal options.

Call us at (619) 630-2680 or fill out the form below to schedule a free initial consultation with a member of our team. We also offer Zoom video conference consultations!

WHAT STEPS SHOULD YOU TAKE AFTER YOU’VE BEEN ATTACKED BY AN ANIMAL?

1. Seek Immediate Medical Care. This is necessary to make sure the wound is examined, cleaned and treated by a medical professional. Even if you feel like the dog bite injury is not very serious and feel that it is unnecessary to seek medical attention, you should not risk it. The injury could get more serious with time and even become infected. It is also important to document that an injury occurred after an attack. If you can get to your physician, have him or her examine your bite. If not, go to the emergency room if needed.

2. Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney. We are trained and experienced in handling animal and dog bite injury cases. Most dog and animal attacks are covered by the animal owners homeowner’s or renters insurance, which typically provide liability coverage. The most common animal attacks are dog bites or attacks that were unintentional. A dog may get loose, or escape from the owner’s property. Other times, the owner unsafely failed to restrain their dog, allowing it to be off leash in a public place, or even worse knew their dog could be dangerous. 

3. Call the Local Animal Control. Even though the dog owners are required to make this call, sometimes they may fail to do so. Animal Control can help you verify the dog that has bitten you does not have rabies or other diseases. It is important that Animal Control be aware of an attack or biting, as there may be a history of attacks by the same animal. 

3. Take Pictures. If you are well enough to take pictures you should make sure you document the physical wound as well as the place of occurrence. You should also obtain photographs of the dog and/or owner if it is safe to do so. Otherwise, have someone else nearby take photographs and/or video. 

4. Gather Information. Gather as much information as you safely can. Get names and addresses of the animal owner(s), of those who were around to witness the dog bite.

Call us at (619) 630- 2680 or fill out the form below to schedule a free initial consultation with a member of our team. We offer free telephone and video conference consultations.