Buffalo Dog Bites
As pet ownership increases in the U.S., so does the risk of being bitten by a dog. Nationwide, we have between 83 million and 88 million dogs, and 4.5 million people are bitten every year, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association AVMA. Children are more likely than adults to be attacked by dogs and more likely to be severely injured.
Can Risky Dog Bite Situations Be Avoided?
According to AVMA, any dog will bite under the right circumstances, regardless of breed, gender, age, or size. Dog bites can sometimes be prevented if you know when not to interact with a dog and how to avoid certain scenarios. Paying attention to body language can help. You should not pet a dog if:
- The dog is not with its owner.
- The owner did not give you permission to pet the dog.
- The dog is on the other side of a fence – never reach through or over a fence to pet a dog.
- The dog is eating, sleeping, sick, or injured.
- The dog is resting with puppies or seems anxious or protective.
- The dog is growling or barking.
- The dog is playing with a toy.
- The dog appears to be hiding or wanting to be left alone.
What Types of Injuries Do Dog Attacks Cause?
Nearly one in five people bitten by dogs need medical treatment for their injuries. More than 800,000 people in the U.S. get treated for dog bites every year, as reported by AVMA. If left untreated, dog bites can lead to serious or even potentially life-threatening infections. Dog attacks can cause severe injuries, including:
- Puncture wounds
- Fractured bones
- Nerve damage
- Tissue damage
- Eye injuries
- Facial injuries
- Head and neck injuries
- Scarring and disfigurement
What Should You Do If an Aggressive Dog Approaches You?
If an aggressive dog that is not on a leash, approaches you, do not panic, scream, waive your arms, jump up and down, or make eye contact with the dog. Try to do the following instead:
- Remain calm.
- Using a firm voice, command the dog to go away.
- Stand upright and straight.
- Get on top of something, if possible.
- Throw food to the dog, away from yourself.
- Back against a wall or into a corner to keep the dog from getting behind you.
- If you cannot get away, yell at the dog and throw everything you have at it to distract it.
How Can You Recover Compensation for Dog Bites in Buffalo?
If you or your child has been attacked by someone else’s dog, you may be entitled to pursue compensation from the animal’s owner. New York dog bite law is a mix between strict liability, in which the owner is liable for damages caused by the animal whether there was negligence, and the one-bite rule, by which dog owners are only liable for damages if they knew or should have known the dog would bite.
In New York, dog owners are strictly liable for any medical expenses related to injuries caused by their animals. To recover compensation for other damages, such as lost wages, scarring and disfigurement, pain and suffering, or emotional distress, you will need to establish negligence on the part of the dog owner. This is easiest to do if the dog has bitten before and the owner, knowing the dog could bite, failed to prevent harm to others or warn of the danger.
Who Can You Call for Help?
Our experienced Buffalo dog bite attorneys at the Russell Friedman Law Group are committed to standing up for the injured people we represent. Our firm has a reputation for excellence and a history of success for our clients.
Call us today at (716) 335-9239 if you or your loved one has been bitten by a dog.
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