For many, it rings true that dogs are man’s best friend. Their unwavering loyalty and love for their owners is something few animals demonstrate. However, some dogs are not as kind or friendly as others, which can lead to attacks. These instances can cause significant issues for the victim, as the damages they endure can be extensive. If you are the victim of a dog attack, knowing how to proceed through these challenging times with the help of a Wesley Chapel, FL personal injury lawyer is vital. The following blog explores what you must know about these circumstances.
What Should I Do Following a Dog Attack?
If you have been the victim of a dog attack, understanding how to proceed after this incident is vital to recovering the damages you are entitled to. Generally, the first thing you should do if you do not require an ambulance to transfer you to a hospital is to get the information of the dog and the owner. This is crucial, as it ensures you have a way to contact the owner to obtain details about the dog. You’ll want to determine whether or not the dog is up-to-date on their vaccines, as you may need to get a rabies vaccination.
Next, you’ll want to receive medical care for the injuries you sustained. Untreated bites and lacerations caused by a dog can become infected, so ensuring you have these wounds treated is vital. Additionally, the doctors can determine whether or not the injuries require stitches if they are too deep to heal on their own.
Who Can Face Liability for the Damages I’ve Endured?
In some states, dogs are granted a “free bite” to prove they are aggressive or violent. In these states, the owner is typically only liable for the medical treatment of the victim for the first instance in which their dog is aggressive. Additionally, it may be required for the victim to prove the owner knew the dog was dangerous to recover compensation.
However, Florida is a strict liability state when it comes to dog bites. As such, the owner can be held liable for damages endured by the victim regardless of whether or not they knew their dog was dangerous. Also, victims do not need to prove the owner was negligent leading up to the injury. Florida does not consider the breed or previous acts of aggression when determining liability. It must simply be proven the individual owns the dog and the dog attacked the victim.
When you’ve suffered injuries because of an aggressive dog, you’ll want to contact an experienced personal injury attorney from the Law Offices of Matthew J. Jowanna as soon as possible. We understand how devastating these injuries can be, as they can cause pain and disfigurement. That’s why our team is committed to doing everything possible to fight for the compensation you deserve. Contact us today to discuss the details of your injuries with a member of our team.