Orange County Dog Bites
Dog bites can be very dangerous and apart from causing pain, a dog bite can lead to life threatening injuries.
Treating dog bites can also take a long time and can be expensive.
One requires legal representation in the event they get bitten by a dog.
This article offers information on how one should go about such an incident.
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Common Causes of Dog Bites
- Disturbance of a sick dog or a dog that has puppies
- Entering property that is guarded by dogs
- Stepping on a dog that is resting
- Playing with an excessively excited dog
- Disturbing a dog while they eat
- Screaming or playing near a dog -typically done by children
- Pulling the tail of a dog
Common Injuries caused by Dog Bites
- Emotional Trauma
- Excessive bleeding
- The dog can infect a person with rabies
What to do After a Dog Bite?
Get Medical Attention
Once you are bitten by a dog, the first thing you should do is get medical help.
Ensure you inform the medics whether you have been treated before for rabies.
Get to know who owns the dog
Once you receive treatment, get to know who owns the dog.
Inform the owner about the incident that happened and request them to restrain the dog.
Inform the animal control agents and the Orange County Police
Ensure that you inform the relevant authorities about the dog bite.
First, they may restrain the dog and avoid a case scenario where it can bite another dog.
Contacting the relevant agents may help you in the future when you will be dealing with the insurance company in the event of a lawsuit.
Collect the evidence
Before leaving the scene, ensure you take the evidence.
This can include the photos of the scene and if you were bitten in someone’s house or yard.
You can use your cellphone to take the photos and if you have a camera, even better.
You should also keep your clothes with the blood, dirt and stains since you will use them as evidence.
Orange County Dog Bite Statistics
Children are the most common age group that get dog bites.
Over 70% of all dog bites that occur are among children.
Majority of emergency visits by children are attributed to dog bites.
Children are common victims since they play with the dogs and in many cases, they don’t know the harm the dogs can cause.
In the United States, annually, over 4.7 million people get bitten by a dog.
The largest number are children aged between 5 years to 9 years.
Damages that are awarded in relation to dog bites each year are over $2 billion dollars.
60% of all dog bites happen at home or the immediate neighborhoods of the dog.
In 2012, there were 1,058 dog bites in Orange Country according to Orange County Animal Care.
264 vicious and potential dangerous dogs were investigated in 2012 in Orange County.
According to State Farm, the highest number of dog bite claims are in California.
Insurance claims in 2011 amounted to $479 million.
How to Avoid Dog Bites
- Ensure that you have your dog restrained either with a wall, or a chain or a leash.
- Don’t leave a child behind on their own with a dog
- Approach any dog slowly
- If a dog is eating or feeding its puppies, do not disturb it
- If you have small children, look out for a dog that has a good temperament
- Report to the relevant authorities the presence of a vicious dog
California Law On Dog Bites
Under California law, a victim of dog bites is entitled to full compensation.
According to the law in Orange County, the Orange County Code of Ordinances provides that if a person has knowledge that an animal bite has taken place, he or she should report to the Orange County Animal Care.
This duty doesn’t only apply to the person who is bitten but it also applies to the witness and the owner of the dog.
Owners of the dog have a duty to provide identification information that includes the name, address, personal contacts and the name and number of the dog before 48 hours lapse.
A dog owner is liable for any damage or injury caused as a result of a dog bite according to the California Strict Liability Statute.
The proof required is that the person was in a public place or in a private place lawfully.
In the case of trespass, the strict liability statute may not apply.
Strict liability only applies with the dog owner and not the dog trainer or the dog sitter.
Leashes and Restraints
According to Orange County Code, the dog owner should restrain their dog either with a fence, chain, leash or wall.
If the dog is restrained by a leash, the person handling it should be competent.
What is My Dog Bite Claim Worth?
The question of how much a victim is entitled to is one of our most frequently asked and the most difficult to answer.
It makes more sense here to outline what you could be entitled to and then discuss actual damages with our attorneys.
Dog bite victims are typically eligible to receive compensation for:
- Medical bills and hospital expenses, including future medical costs
- Lost wages and lost earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
In order to help your own cause, it is vital that you keep detailed records.
Lost work time and wages, pain and suffering, limitations incurred as a result of the dog bite, and all out-of-pocket expenses (such as transportation and medicine) should be meticulously documented.
In addition, follow all doctor’s orders strictly.
Failure to do so could be used as evidence by another party that your injuries and suffering are less severe than you claim.
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