Dog Bite Attorney Washington DC

Over the first 12 months of the Covid-19 pandemic, pet ownership in the United States skyrocketed to an all-time high of 70% of all households reporting that they have a domestic animal, including dogs. This leap in dog ownership has led to issues such as veterinary care shortages and an increase in dogs that have not been properly trained. As social distancing restrictions were relaxed at the beginning of summer 2021, these “pandemic pups” were introduced to the greater public, and significant issues with socialization and appropriate obedience became a major topic of discussion. While many people gave their pups the proper care and attention to ensure that they were not threats to strangers, other dogs were poorly trained or not trained at all, which can lead to serious problems for dog owners and strangers alike. 

While the Covid-19 pandemic has undoubtedly factored into the issue of dog bites, dog attacks have been common threats for many years before and will be for years to come. An average of 4.7 million people are attacked by dogs each year. In Washington DC, dog owners must quarantine their dog for ten days after an attack to ensure that they do not develop rabies symptoms. Further restrictions are imposed on an aggressive dog after an initial attack. While these requirements can help improve safety for the public after an initial attack, animals with no history of aggression can and do bite people often. If you are the victim of a dog attack, it is essential to know your rights as a victim. 

Contact Balkin & Mausner For a Free Legal Consultation After a Dog Bite in Washington DC

Our law firm offers a free consultation for victims of dog bites where we can discuss the specifics of the attack, the impacts of this traumatic experience, and provide insight and legal advice about how best to move forward from this situation. After suffering from any sort of serious injury, trying to make sense of your situation separate from your legal issues can feel very overwhelming, and trying to manage a personal injury claim, in addition, can be nearly impossible. Insurance companies know this and take advantage of a claimant’s stress and anxiety to work towards as low of a settlement as possible. 

Partnering with a personal injury attorney after a dog bite is one of the best ways to ensure that you are working towards a fair settlement for your many damages while also prioritizing your recovery and both your personal and professional needs. Personal injury law is complex and requires close attention to detail as well as a willingness to fight back as the insurance company works to resolve your claim for far less than you deserve. 

Contact our law firm as soon as possible to speak with a dog bite attorney about your unique situation and get legal advice about how you can work towards the money you deserve. 

What To Do After a Dog Bite

After an accident or injury, the most important thing that a victim should focus on is getting medical care and avoiding any additional injuries such as infection or complications. Your top priority as a dog attack victim is to clean the wound immediately and completely to reduce the risk of infection (one of the biggest risks of an animal bite) and getting professional medical care. Each additional step listed below will help your legal case, but should not be carried out at the risk of complicating your injuries or disregarding your health. 

Call 911

Even if the dog’s owner tries to pressure you to handle this without involving the authorities, calling 911 is one of the best ways you can ensure that you get the care you need after an attack. Once contacted, the dispatcher will send police, fire, and EMT support to the scene to provide emergency medical care, secure the area and gather information to compile an incident report. This police report will play an important factor in any future legal actions you choose to take.

Clean the Wounds

Clean your injuries with a mild soap under warm water for at least 10 minutes. You will want to apply antibiotics to the injuries, but it is best to wait for the EMTs so they can examine the wounds and make any suggestions about the type of care and attention the injury requires. In certain instances, such as where blood loss or damage to soft tissues is apparent, they may encourage that you take an ambulance to the emergency room where you can get the appropriate care.

Get Medical Care

Whether you take an ambulance to the emergency room or leave the scene on your own, having your injury examined by a doctor should be a top priority. Contact your primary care physician to schedule a follow-up appointment as soon as possible to ensure that your wounds do not get more infected and that there aren’t issues you have not noticed or that must be addressed to avoid further complications. In addition to the obvious benefit of getting care for your injuries, your doctor will document your injuries which will be necessary for your upcoming personal injury case. 

Record Relevant Details 

If possible, record a short video at the scene of the attack that touches on all relevant details you can think of, including things like how you came in contact with the dog and owner, the events that led to the attack, and what happened during and after the attack. Any other information that seems helpful will be important to include as well because as time goes on, your memory is almost certain to fade. Every detail included in this step will help your attorney make sense of the situation and provide helpful information that can be referenced throughout your claims process or lawsuit.

Contact a Personal Injury Attorney

In many Washington DC dog attacks, a victim may be able to file an insurance claim in order to recover a range of damages they have suffered. Many people mistakenly believe that working with an attorney is only helpful when planning to file a lawsuit. The reality is that personal injury lawyers will typically work towards reaching an out-of-court settlement agreement before even filing an official complaint. Working with a lawyer is one of the best ways to give yourself the time and space necessary to focus on recovery while an experienced and proven legal professional fights to get you the money you deserve after this painful and traumatic experience.