Dogs are generally friendly animals that make great companions. However, if they feel scared or threatened, they have been known to attack people and other animals. If you or your child have been the victim of a dog bite, it may be a good idea to talk with Patrick Toscano, San Antonio’s dog bite attorney, to learn more about your rights.
Anyone Can Be a Victim
Children between the ages of 5 and 9 are most likely to be bitten by a dog. Smaller children may not understand how to interact with a dog or know what signs that it may give to stay away. Larger dogs may pose a significant threat to a child as it may be as large or larger than the child itself.
However, this doesn’t mean that adults cannot be victims of dog bites as well. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control says that there are 4.5 million reports of dog bites each year. There are a variety of injuries that a person can suffer after being bitten or attacked such as puncture wounds, lacerations or becoming infected with rabies. In some cases, a person may have a limb amputated in addition to suffering from emotional stress.
Seek Medical Attention Right Away
Even if your injuries from a dog bite seem minor, go to the hospital or see your doctor immediately. At the very least, you should wash the location of the bite thoroughly with soap and hot water. This will help to clean the area and reduce the risk of an infection.
Going to the doctor or to a hospital may be beneficial if you plan on pursuing a personal injury lawsuit. Medical records can be used to show that you sought medical attention specifically because of an attack by an animal. Such records may also prove that you suffered financial and other damages because of the attack, which is part of proving negligence in court. Most hospitals in the San Antonio area are trained and equipped to handle dog bite and potential rabies cases.
What Other Factors Constitute Negligence in a Dog Bite Case?
An owner may be negligent in a dog bite case if he or she knew or should have known that the dog could be aggressive. However, an owner may still be negligent even if the dog had never been aggressive in the past. This could be true if the animal was left to wander the streets by itself or had rabies but was not treated for it. However, if an animal is in its owner’s yard or otherwise kept away from people, the owner may not be liable for damages.
I’m in Texas. How Long Do I Have to Pursue a Dog Bite Case?
In the state of Texas, you have two years to file a personal injury lawsuit. As a general rule, you should seek out the advice of a San Antonio attorney as soon as possible. This may make it easier to file the suit on time, and it may also make it more likely that the suit is filed in accordance with Texas state law.
If you have been bitten by a dog, you should seek medical attention immediately. Our experienced San Antonio dog bite lawyer, Patrick Toscano, is ready to talk about your personal injury once you’re ready.