Dog Bite Attack
Few things are more frightening than being attacked by a dog. Over 41% of Americans own at least one dog. However, everyone needs to remember even the most trusted dogs can inflict injuries on both children and adults, leaving victims severely injured and traumatized. In fact, for children, dog bite injuries can be fatal.
At Ketterman Rowland & Westlund our dog bite attorneys are prepared to help victims and their families who have suffered serious injury as a result of an attack. We have a complete understanding of the Texas laws that govern dog bite attacks and injuries. We know how to successfully apply them to your case so that you may get the best results.
Here’s how Ketterman Rowland & Westlund can help you with your dog bite case
- Thorough understanding of Texas Law
- Informed with data and statistics
- Settlement Negotiating
- Persistence with insurance companies
Why You Need an Attorney After a Dog Attack
If you’ve been bitten by a dog, our attorneys can provide essential help, including investigating the accident, determining who may be liable, calculating the full extent of your losses, negotiating a settlement, and advocating for the compensation you deserve.
One of the most important ways our lawyers can help is by investigating what happened in your case and who should be held liable. In some cases, the owner of the dog was not around, and it may be unclear who was responsible for the animal. In other cases, the dog may have been a known danger in the area, and the owner failed to restrain it. Regardless of how you were bitten, our lawyers can work with you to understand the circumstances of your injury and then gather the evidence your claim needs to move forward.
Another important way that a lawyer can help is by determining who may have been responsible for the animal when you were attacked. In some cases, the owner is managing the animal, but in other cases, the dog may have been under the care of a walking service, a pet boarding service, or another person who failed in their duties.
After investigating, our lawyers will be prepared to negotiate with insurance companies and others responsible for the injuries. Dog bite negotiations can be complex, but our attorneys know how to handle them and how to fight for the compensation you deserve.
It’s important to note that in most cases, dog bite injury victims are dealing with a homeowners’ insurance company and not directly with the dog’s owner. This means that any money you recover will likely come from the insurance company, not directly out of the pocket of the dog’s owner, who may be a friend, neighbor or relative.
If necessary, our dog bite lawyers are prepared to fight for the compensation you deserve in court. While most dog bite claims are settled, there are cases where dog bite injury victims must go to court to pursue the compensation they need. In those cases, our lawyers can prepare the legal filings, strategies, and arguments that the claim needs.
Quick Facts about Dog Bites
- Homeowners insurers paid out $675 million in liability claims related to dog bites and other dog-related injuries in 2018.((Dog Bite Liability by Insurance Information Institute, 2019))
- The average cost per claim nationally has risen more than 103 percent from 2003 to 2018, due to increased medical costs as well as the size of settlements, judgments and jury awards given to plaintiffs.((Dog Bite Liability by Insurance Information Institute, 2019))
- Approximately 4.5 million dog bites occur each year in the United States. Nearly 1 out of 5 bites become infected.((Preventing Dog Bites, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, May 2015))
- In 2018, nearly 27,000 people underwent reconstructive surgery as a result of being bitten by dogs.((2018 Plastic Surgery Statistics Report by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 2019))
- There was an 86% increase in dog bite-related hospitalization stays between 1993 and 2008 in the United States.((Emergency Department Visits and Inpatient Stays Involving Dog Bites, 2008 by Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), 2010))
- The average cost of a dog bite-related hospital stay was $18,200, about 50% higher than the average injury-related hospital stay.((Emergency Department Visits and Inpatient Stays Involving Dog Bites, 2008 by Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), 2010))
- There were 4 times as many dog bite-related ED visits and 3 times as many hospital stays in rural areas than in urban areas in 2008.((Emergency Department Visits and Inpatient Stays Involving Dog Bites, 2008 by Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), 2010))
- In 2008, Medicare and Medicaid combined paid for 37% of all dog bite-related hospitalization stays in the United States.((Emergency Department Visits and Inpatient Stays Involving Dog Bites, 2008 by Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), 2010))
- Adults with two or more dogs in the household are 5 times more likely to be bitten than those living without dogs in the home.((Dog bites: still a problem?, by Gilchrist J, Sacks JJ, White D, Kresnow MJ, Injury Prevention, 2008))
- Dog bites occur every 75 seconds in the United States. Each day, over 1,000 citizens need emergency medical care to treat these injuries.((Nonfatal Dog Bite-Related Injuries Treated in Hospital Emergency Departments – United States, 2001 by the CDC, 2003))
- Dog attack victims suffer over $1 billion in monetary losses annually. JAMA reports this estimate to be as high as $2 billion.((Dog Bites Recognized as Public Health Problem by R. Voelker, JAMA, 1997))
Obtaining Compensation in a Dog Bite Lawsuit
Victims suffering from dog bite injuries due to an attack may be able to recover compensation for several types of damages, including:
- Medical care expenses (past, present, and future) for treatment related to the attack
- Lost income
- Pain and suffering damages (physical suffering and mental suffering)
The damages from a dog bite are often significant and can depend on a number of factors, including the severity of your injuries and the type of medical treatment sought. An experienced lawyer should be able to evaluate your claim and determine what is fair compensation for your injuries. Making the mistake of hiring an attorney who has not handled these types of claims can mean the difference of not maximizing your settlement.
Do you know which dogs bite the most?
- Dogs that bite the most:((Puppy Lovers News))
- Pit Bull
- German Shepherd
- Australian Shepherd
- Lhasa Apso
- Jack Russell Terrier
- Cocker Spaniel
- Bull Terrier
We can say that we have seen somewhat similar results with the above list. San Antonio has the most attacks from Chihuahua, Pit Bulls, Labrador Retrievers, and German Shephards.
*Joe Conger from News 4 San Antonio using data from the San Antonio ACS created this incredibly informative Tableau graph with statistics on where people are getting bitten on their bodies, just type in your zip code.
Knowing statistical data like this helps our attorneys in nearly every case. When negotiating with the insurance company having data to present can oftentimes make a bigger difference than what people think.
Know What to Do If You Have Been Attacked by a Dog
If you’ve been attacked by a dog:
- Seek medical attention immediately. After an attack, it is of the utmost importance to seek professional medical care. Even a small dog bite can introduce potentially dangerous foreign bacteria from the dog’s mouth into your bloodstream. A dog bite can cause everything from a minor infection to rabies, so it’s vital that you allow a qualified doctor to assess your condition.
- Follow doctor’s orders. Often, you will need a prescription and follow-up appointments with your medical provider. During this time you should keep all of your bills and medical records, or ask for copies, so that they are available when needed by you or your dog attack lawyer.
- Ask for all animal vaccination records. While circumstances may make it difficult to identify a dog’s owner, you should try to obtain all of the proper information relative to the animal, including:
- The dog’s owner
- Animal veterinary information and history
- The animal’s vaccination records
Your doctor will also want this information to know best how to treat your injuries. If the dog is not up-to-date with its vaccinations, rabies will need to be ruled out.
- Get help from our experienced dog bite injury lawyers. Not only can an attorney work to maximize your insurance payout, but they are keenly aware of how insurance companies protect their bottom line at the expense of victims. When people choose to independently pursue a claim, often they only receive only a fraction of the compensation they would have gotten had they hired a lawyer.
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Dedicated Dog Bite Attorneys Serving You
Why did you or someone you love get attacked by a dog? In almost every case, a dog bite is the result of the owner’s negligence. Texas law requires dog owners to exercise control over their dogs at all times. Texas is a “one bite rule” state, meaning that the owner of a dog must have known the dog was aggressive or could have bitten, or that the dog’s owner was negligent in their duties to control the animal. This is true no matter the dog’s size or breed.
At Ketterman Rowland & Westlund, our talented dog bite attorneys have handled a wide range of claims, and we’re ready to help you. We offer a free case evaluation, and we can answer any questions you may have about a claim for your injuries. To schedule a free case evaluation, contact us today. Call us or use our online form to get in touch.
- There is a huge benefit in having data and statistics on dog attacks from the San Antonio area
- Ketterman Rowland & Westlund know how to negotiate with insurance companies
- Getting you compensation from a dog bite or dog attack is our number one priority