If you have ever been attacked by a dog, you know that it is a terrifying experience. Dog attacks occur much too frequently - the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that more than 4.5 million Americans suffer dog bites every year. 350,000 of these are serious enough to warrant emergency medical care.
Typical injuries from a dog attack include:
- Facial injuries to nose, ears and eyes that can lead to permanent disfigurement
- Muscle and internal tissue damage
In addition to physical wounds, a dog bite victim may suffer distressing and long-lasting emotional damage. Signs of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are not unusual and can include anxiety, nightmares, headaches, paranoia or unusual behavior.
How To Behave in a Potential Dog Attack Situation
If you find yourself facing a strange dog:
- Do remain still.
- Do say "No" or "Go away" in a firm voice.
- Do let the dog sniff the back of your hand if you are approached.
- Do protect yourself if you are attacked - curl up into a ball and protect your head, neck and ears with your hands.
- Don't go near an unfamiliar dog.
- Don't panic - stay calm.
- Don't try to pet a dog before it observes you and smells your hand.
- Don't interrupt a dog that is sleeping or eating.
It's important to take action right away if you have been bitten by a dog, including getting medical care and notifying Animal Control. Take photos of your injuries and the scene and contact us to determine if you are eligible for compensation for your injuries.
Children are especially drawn to dogs and are at the greatest risk of a bite. Never leave a child alone with a dog, even one that you view as friendly - 75% of dogs in biting incidents belong to the victim's family member or friend. Coach your child to avoid strange dogs and keep their faces away - never try to kiss a dog. Read more about dog attacks and children at SafetyAroundDogs.org.
New Jersey Has Stringent Dog Laws
In our state, a dog owner is liable for the injuries if the victim was on public property or was legally present on private property when bitten, even if the dog had never acted viciously before. The law is a "strict liability" statute meaning that the dog owner is usually responsible even if the owner didn't know that the dog might bite and even if the owner took reasonable steps to restrain the dog.
If you or a family member has been injured by a dog bite or any other type of personal injury, or needs help with any employment discrimination or family law issue, please contact the Law Offices of Paul S. Foreman, P.C. immediately. We have the right experience to get the optimal results for your case. Please call us for a free consultation. Attorney Paul S. Foreman, personal injury attorney in Essex County, will fight to secure justice for you and your family. You can reach us at 973-315-3232 or contact us via the website.