dogbite cover
Dog BitePersonal Injury

Dogs are notoriously known for being man’s best friend. However, they can sometimes become your worst nightmare. When a dog bite happens, your life can immediately change. Your trust in all other dogs can be jeopardized as well as your ability to physically function the way you did before the dog bite.

Over 4.5 million dog bites happen each year, with 1 of 5 bites becoming infected. These injuries can also be life-threatening. If you are bitten by a dog, you may want to file a lawsuit to receive compensation for your injuries and to punish the dog owner for their negligence.

Here are 5 key elements of winning a dog bite case:

dog bite wound

Common Injuries from Dog Bites

Before you file a dog bite lawsuit, you must consider the nature of the injury. The most common injuries from dog attacks include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Skin lacerations
  • Broken bones
  • Puncture wounds
  • Abrasions
  • Eye injuries
  • Nerve damage
  • Tendon damage

If you were bitten by a dog and the injury, it is time to start looking for a dog bite lawyer.

5 Keys to Winning a Dog Bite Case

When you are ready to file a lawsuit, it is imperative to prove your case that the dog owner owes you financial restitution for your harms and losses.

Here are the 5 keys to winning a dog bite case:

dog bite evidence

Collect evidence

Before you embark on your legal claim, you must first begin to collect the evidence. The evidence must detail the dog’s behavior, in addition to videos and photograph proof of the injuries.

After the bite has happened, take pictures of everything, including any visible bodily injuries, the dog who attacked you, and the surrounding areas. Look for a hole in a gate or fence if you believe that the dog got loose from its property. Note if the owner was present and if the dog was on a leash or not. Also of note is documenting whether or not the behavior of the dog seemed

Seek medical treatment

Not only do you need to get medical help after a dog bite for your own safety, but it is essential to your legal case. Ensuring that the wound does not become infected or that further severe results happen is important..

The next step is to retrieve the medical documents that show the treatment, expenses, and future needed treatment and expenses in order to properly recover. These documents are crucial to substantiating your damages claim in a dog bite injury case.

dog bite eye witness

Obtain eyewitness accounts

If anyone witnessed the dog bite and injury, you need their help. Reach out and try to obtain a statement as soon as  possible. If they are not willing to provide a statement, they could still be called to testify at trial (if your case goes to court).

If you required an ambulance to transport you to the emergency room following the attack, retrieve their contact information to discuss the nature of the scene from their viewpoint at a later time. Document all of their statements to add to your legal file for your dog bite attorney to review.

Prove negligence occurred

One of the most important aspects of winning a dog bite case is to prove negligence. In order to prove negligence in a dog bite case, you must prove the following by a preponderance of the evidence:

  • Legal duty of care
  • Breach of duty of care
  • Breach caused injuries
  • Injuries resulted in certain damages

If all of the aforementioned are provable, you may have won your case. The dog owner has legal responsibility and duty of care to prevent any injury or issue from their dog. This can include but is not limited to:

  • Keeping the dog on the property by the use of fences or gates
  • Using a muzzle or a leash when off of the property
  • Following all local animal control ordinances
  • Monitoring the dog when other people are around
  • Getting involved if the dog shows aggressive behavior

If the dog owner did not display the proper duty of care regarding their dog, and the dog injures someone, they may be held liable. This entails them providing financial restitution for your harms and losses, which may include:

  • Medical bills and expenses
  • Potential cost of future medical bills
  • Loss of wages
  • Loss of work
  • Pain and suffering
  • And more
Dog bite laws

Hire a dog bite lawyer

Another key consideration when filing a lawsuit against a dog owner is  hiring an injury attorney. You may be entitled to significant economic and non-economic damages stemming from the dog bite injury.

Winning a dog bite case can be complex, which is why it is imperative to hire an experienced and knowledgeable dog bite attorney. You can maximize the chance of winning the case by hiring the right legal team to represent you in:

  • Organizing the sequence of events
  • Collecting evidence
  • Obtaining witness statements
  • Negotiations with the defense attorney
  • Negotiations with the insurance companies
  • Provide support for you throughout the case
  • Prove negligence
  • Evaluate the compensation you may be entitled
  • And more

It is crucial to contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Statutes of limitations are in place, and if you wait too long, you may lose the case before it even starts. The quicker a lawyer can examine your case, the better chance you have of getting the compensation you need.

Bottom Line

If you were bitten by a dog and know that it was due to the owner’s negligence, you may have a legal claim. The right dog bite lawyers can help you get the damages you need to heal and get peace of mind after being injured by a dog.

Injuries can be severe after being attacked by a dog. This is why it is so important to seek medical attention, obtain the necessary evidence, retrieve witness statements, and hire an attorney as soon as possible.