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Steps To Take After Dog Bite

Posted on October 27, 2023

A skilled dog bite lawyer knows that dog attacks can be traumatic experiences. Whether it’s a small scratch or a more serious wound, the aftermath of a dog bite can leave victims feeling scared and unsure of the next steps. Navigating the legal and medical implications can be overwhelming. To help, here are some essential steps to take following a dog bite.

Understand The Importance Of Medical Attention

You should monitor your health immediately after a dog attack. Even if the bite appears minor, it’s crucial to seek medical attention immediately. Dog bites can introduce bacteria and other pathogens that might lead to infections, some of which can be life-threatening if left untreated. A medical professional will not only treat the wound but also advise you on signs of complications to watch out for.

Document The Incident

After a dog bite, it’s important to gather as much information about the incident as possible. Start by taking note of the dog’s appearance and breed. If there were any witnesses to the event, gather their accounts for a fuller picture of what transpired. You should gather the contact information of the dog’s owner if you are able to obtain it. Recalling and documenting the circumstances leading up to the bite can also provide invaluable context, especially if you’re considering legal action later on.

Report The Bite

In many regions, it’s mandatory to report dog bites to local health departments or animal control agencies. This ensures the safety of the community by tracking potentially dangerous animals. As a dog bite injury lawyer like one from Welts, White, & Fontaine, P.C. can explain, an official report can be valuable especially if you decide to take legal action. 

Consider Legal Advice

Attorneys like those at Welts, White, & Fontaine, P.C. can attest to the complexities of dog bite cases. These can range from determining liability to understanding the legal nuances specific to your area. Consult with a lawyer as soon as possible if you believe that you have grounds for a dog bite case. 

Monitor Your Health

Be sure to remain vigilant regarding your health following a dog bite injury. Even with immediate medical attention, complications can arise days or even weeks after the incident. If you notice signs of infection such as increased redness, swelling, pus, or if the pain worsens, consult a doctor immediately. Likewise, keep an eye out for any emotional or psychological distress. It’s not uncommon for dog bite victims to experience anxiety, fear, or even post-traumatic stress.

Stay Informed On The Dog’s Health Status

Seek medical attention right away and stay informed about the dog’s health condition. Rabies is a rare but potentially fatal disease that can be transmitted through dog bites. Ask the dog owner for the animal’s vaccination records. If the dog hasn’t been vaccinated or its status is unknown, you may need to undergo a series of rabies shots as a precaution.

Engage In Open Communication

It’s understandable to feel anger or frustration towards the dog owner, but it’s often beneficial to maintain open and respectful communication. They may even be willing to cooperate with you or offer to pay for some of your expenses. An amicable resolution can sometimes be found without resorting to legal measures. 

The aftermath of a dog bite can be daunting, but by following these steps and seeking the necessary support, you can navigate the situation effectively and ensure your well-being. Whether it’s for medical advice, emotional support, or legal consultation, don’t hesitate to seek the help you need. Set up an appointment with a competent lawyer now.

Az: 480.418.9100
MO: 314.387.5900
AZ: 480.418.9100
MO: 314.387.5900