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Atlanta Dog Bite Attorneys
Dog Bite Cases in Georgia
Property owners can be held responsible for dog bites and attacks. Although dogs are thought to be man’s best friend, some dogs are ferocious and threaten innocent people in the community. When dogs aren’t fenced off or tied up, they can get out and attack a pedestrian, bicyclist, neighbor, child, or delivery person. When a dog attack occurs, a victim may suffer from:
- Physical injuries – Dog attacks can cause massive trauma to humans due to the dog’s teeth and claws. When dog bites occur, victims are left with serious injuries that often require surgery. Most dog bites produce scars that will last a lifetime, and some animal attacks have even led to disabilities.
- Emotional injuries – Even after a dog bite physically heals, a victim may still suffer from graphic memories. It can take a lifetime to heal from the emotional damage that was caused by a dog attack. This is because a victim may forever be distressed in the presence of other dogs.
- Financial damages – When a victim suffers a dog bite, he or she may incur expensive medical bills for the emergency room visit, tests, surgery, hospital bills, medication costs, physical therapy, lost wages, and more. Victims of Georgia dog bites need not bear this financial burden alone. The dog owner’s insurance will likely cover the financial damages and this should be pursued.
If dog owners allow their pets to be outside their homes and yards roaming freely and someone suffers a dog bite as a result, that dog owner may be held liable and in violation of the Georgia leash laws. Even if a dog escaped and attacked someone, the dog owner could still be held accountable for bodily injury or death.
Identifying Dangerous Breeds of Dogs
Become familiar with the dogs that are considered more aggressive. These breeds can include:
- Doberman Pinschers
- Pit Bulls
- Siberian Huskies
While some of these dogs are well-behaved, remember that good behavior starts with dog owners. If a dog owner is teaching these types of dogs to be aggressive, or if they are abusing their dogs, then the dogs may be more prone to bite. Because you may be unaware of their environment, it is best to use caution around these types of dogs.
Signs of an Aggressive Dog
By understanding a dog’s body language, you may be able to determine when a dog is aggressive and ready to bite. Watch for these signs:
- The hair on the back of the dog;s neck and spine is standing up.
- The dog’s ears may be standing up straight or pinned against its head.
- The dog may look tense.
- It is growling.
- The dog’s nose and/or lips may be pulled back.
- Its teeth are showing.
If a dog bit you, you deserve compensation for your injuries, pain and suffering, scars, lost wages, and more.
Common Injuries Associated with Dog Bites
While some people may think of a dog bite as an injury in and of itself, it is actually an incident that can cause a number of different and distinct injuries. Some of the more common include the following:
- Broken bones
- Loss of fingers or toes
- Muscle damage
- Brain injuries
These injuries have the potential to keep victims from working for an extended period of time as well as require intensive medical treatment. Often, the first step in recovering for these and other losses is discussing your case with an attorney who is familiar with litigating dog bite cases in Georgia.
Who is Most at Risk?
The groups most at risk include children, adult men, and people who keep dogs in their home.
- Children – the rates of dog bites is the greatest for children aged from 5 to 9 years old. In addition, children are more likely to require medical attention for dog bites than adults.
- Males – on average, men are more likely to be bitten than women
- People with dogs in the household – Among all age groups, having a dog in the home is directly correlated with an increase in dog bites. For adults with two or more dogs in the home, the risk of sustaining a dog bite increases five-fold.
The CDC recommends the following steps to reduce the risk of sustaining a dog bite:
- Request the advice of a professional to determine what breed would be the best fit for your household and situation
- If there are children in the household, avoid breeds with a history of aggression
- Be aware of cues that indicate that a child is afraid of dogs. If there is a child in your household that is afraid of dogs, wait before bringing a dog into your home
- Before committing to adopting or purchasing a dog, be sure to spend time with the dog.
- If you have an infant or toddler in your household, use extreme caution before adopting or purchasing a dog.
Advice for Keeping Children Safe from Dogs
Children need guidance when learning how to deal with dogs. If you are a parent or a caregiver, be sure to advise children as to how to behave around animals
The CDC recommends the following safety tips for children:
- Avoid approaching an unfamiliar dog
- Do not run away from a dog or yell
- Try and remain motionless when approached by a dog you have not met
- If a dog knocks you over, roll into a ball and stay still
- Always be supervised by an adult when playing with a dog
- Report stray dogs or dogs acting strangely to police
- Do not engage in direct eye contact with a dog
- Avoid dogs that are sleeping, eating, or caring for puppies
- Do not initiate contact with a dog
- If bitten, immediately inform an adult
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