Suffering a dog bite can be a traumatic experience and result in serious injury. Some dog bites can cause an infection, nerve damage, disfigurement and even psychological trauma. Such trauma can severely damage a person’s mental well-being and sense of security around other dogs. Each year, about 4.7 million dog bite injuries occur in the U.S. and out of those, 800,000 people require medical attention. Dogs can bite for any number of reasons. Even the cutest, sweetest dog can bite if defending its territory, feeling stressed or threatened, playing around, or feeling sick from an injury or illness.
If you or a loved one was bitten by a dog, you need to have as much information as possible to assess your legal rights. This is why it is in your best interest to contact a competent attorney with detailed knowledge of dog bite laws who can help you pursue just compensation after suffering a serious injury. Our Brunswick dog bite lawyers at Roden Law have years of experience defending the rights of injured victims against negligent individuals and entities.
Schedule a free, no obligation consultation to learn more about your legal options. Our office is located at 1111 Glynco Parkway, just minutes away from the North Glynn Dog Park. All of our services are provided on a contingency fee basis, which means there are no upfront costs unless you obtain the compensation you deserve.
We look forward to helping you. Call 1-844-RESULTS now.
Common Dog Bite Injuries
Dog bites can lead to a variety of injuries. Generally, these injuries can cause bleeding, bruising, pain, soreness, stiffness and possible scarring. Shallow wounds that are properly cleaned, bandaged and treated with antibiotic cream will not result in a serious injury. However, deep penetrating wounds that affect the ligaments, muscles and bones will require immediate emergency care and possibly the need for stitches or surgery.
The most common injuries resulting from a dog bite include:
- Puncture wounds
- Broken bones
- Facial scarring
- Torn ligaments or tendons
- Nerve damage
- Permanent disfigurement
- Head and neck injuries
- Emotional and psychological trauma
In additional to physical and mental injuries, dog bites can also lead to several infections and diseases:
- Capnocytophaga – This is a type of bacteria that lives in a dog’s mouth and can be spread through a bite. People with weakened immune systems are especially vulnerable.
- MRSA – Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus is a type of staph infection that is resistant to most strands of antibiotics and will not show symptoms in infected animals. MRSA can cause skin, lung and urinary tract infections or spread to the bloodstream, causing deadly infections.
- Pasteurella – This is a common type of bacteria found in infected dog bites. It can cause pain, redness and swelling at the site of the bite. Swollen glands, swelling in the joints, and difficulty moving can also happen, especially with people who have a weakened immune system.
- Rabies – This is a virus that spreads to the brain and is almost always fatal. It can be spread through the bite and saliva of an infected animal. Rabies can be prevented by vaccinating dogs.
- Tetanus – This is a toxin caused by certain bacteria that can cause rigid paralysis in people who are not vaccinated. This is especially a problem in deep penetrating wounds.
Although some injuries and complications after a dog bite can cause serious medical issues and even prove to be fatal, many other infections may cause tissue death at or near the puncture site. This may require amputation in order to prevent the disease from spreading to vital organs.
Long-term medical treatment can also be very expensive. Our personal injury lawyers in Brunswick know how a dog bite injury can impact one’s life and cause stress to your health and finances. Contact us to see whether you have a valid claim and are entitled to compensation for the losses you have suffered.
Fill out our Free Case Evaluation form right away.
What To Do If Bitten By a Dog
Immediately after suffering a dog bite, you may be unsure about what to do next. However, there are certain things you can do to protect your health and your legal interests.
Treat Your Injuries
The most important thing you can do is to seek medical care because you may not know the full extent of your injuries. If possible, wash the wound with soap and water, apply an antibiotic cream and cover the wound with a clean bandage. Even if your wound appears to be minor, the area can become red, warm, painful or swollen. This can cause you to develop a fever or an infection if you are not careful.
For deeper wounds, apply pressure with a clean, dry cloth to stop the bleeding until emergency personnel arrives. Once at the hospital, the doctor will determine the extent of your injuries, how long it will take for your injuries to heal and the treatments you need to make the best possible recovery.
Report the Dog Bite
Be sure to file a dog bite report with the Brunswick Police Department or your local animal control agency. It is especially important to report the incident if you do not know whether the dog has been vaccinated against rabies or if the dog appears to be acting strange or sickly.
Gather Vital Information
Contact the dog owner and ensure that the dog has a current rabies vaccination. You will need to obtain the owner’s name, address and phone number as well as the rabies vaccine license number and the name of the vet who administered the vaccine.
If any witnesses were present, also obtain their names, addresses and phone numbers. A Brunswick dog bite lawyer can use this vital information to contact any witnesses in the future to go over what they saw, which can help us prove negligence occurred.
Take pictures of the location of the dog attack. This includes whether or not the dog was properly restrained or fenced in, or if there were dog warnings signs. Photograph all of your injuries, including any bruises, puncture wounds, lacerations, and torn or bloody clothing.
Contact an Attorney
Once you file a report and obtain medical care, you should contact an attorney for legal help as soon as possible. Pursuing a dog bite claim can be complex and difficult to handle in your own. A skilled Brunswick dog bite lawyer can conduct a thorough investigation to determine the full value of your claim and look out for your best interests every step of the way.
Call Roden Law at 1-844-RESULTS for our free consultation.
Liability for a Dog Bite in Georgia
The state of Georgia follows strict liability rules when it comes to dog ownership. This is governed by the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (O.C.G.A.) § 51-2-7.
Dog owners are held liable for any injury to a person only if the dog was known to be vicious or dangerous. This can be as simple as showing the dog was required to be leased per city ordinance. The attack must also be the result of careless management of the owner for allowing the dog to go at liberty. However, the person injured must not have provoked the dog into attacking him or her.
Under O.C.G.A. § 4-8-21, a dangerous dog is one that:
- Causes a substantial puncture of a person’s skin by using its teeth without causing serious injury
- Aggressively attacks in such a way that causes a person to reasonably believe that the dog posed an imminent threat to his or her safety even though no serious injury occurs; an aggressive attack does not include barking, growling or showing teeth
- Kills a pet animal while off the owner’s property; this does not apply to dogs working or training as hunting, herding or predator control dogs
According to Glynn County Animal Control, owners of dangerous dogs must keep them securely confined indoors or in a securely enclosed and locked pen, fence or suitable structure to prevent young children from entering or the dog from escaping the property.
Our dog bite lawyers in Brunswick have extensive knowledge of how to prove liability in a dog bite claim and how to apply these legal standards to the specifics of your case.
Contact a Brunswick Dog Bite Lawyer Today
We understand the difficulties you may be experiencing after a dog bite and want you to focus on the only thing that matters: working on your recovery. The sooner you speak with an experienced Brunswick dog bite lawyer at Roden Law, the sooner we can work on your case and attempt to recover compensation from the negligent dog owner who caused your injuries.
Our firm has represented many clients throughout the Brunswick area and surrounding cities. We offer free consultations and work on contingency, so you only pay us if we help settle your case.