Think dog bites aren’t a serious problem in America? According to a study by researchers from the Center for Disease Control, 4.5 million Americans a year a bitten by a dog. This means that, in any given year, each American has a one in fifty chance of being bitten by a dog.
Nearly 800,000 of those bites are serious enough to require medical attention and 368,000 of them require hospital visits. That’s more than 1,000 each and every day of the year.
What’s worse, these people aren’t just going to the hospital for a band-aid and some neosporin. The average bill from a dog bite is $18,2200, according to the US Department of Health & Human Services.
Children & Dog Bites
The victims of dog bites are most frequently children. Boys ages 5 to 9 have the highest incidence rate of any age and gender group. Children also suffer more serious injuries for the bites. Because of their short stature, children are more likely to be bitten on the head, face or neck. Dog bites are the fifth most frequent cause of visits to the emergency room among children.
Dog bites to the face or neck of a child can leave permanent scarring that might not be repairable by a plastic surgeon.
Which Dogs are Most Likely to Kill?
Under Virginia law, in the absence of a county or city leash law, you might not be able to recover a dime for your injuries or your child’s injuries after a dog bite. This is even true for what most people consider to be “dangerous dogs,” like pit bulls or Rottweilers.
Pit bulls and pit bull crossbreeds are involved in almost a third of all dog bite fatalities. Rottweilers account for the next third of dog bite deaths.
Do I Need a Lawyer to Settle a Dog Bite Claim?
It is not absolutely necessary to have a lawyer to settle a claim, but it is probably a good idea. There are many things to analyze in a dog bite case that the average individual might not think about:
- past medical bills
- future medical bills
- future plastic surgery costs
- permanent scarring
- emotional damage in children
- permanent disfigurement
Think about this – although dog bite losses cost individuals about $1 billion a year, only $300 million of these losses are actually paid by homeowner’s insurance. Don’t you want to make sure that you get all of the compensation that you deserve for your child’s or your own dog bite case?