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For many North Carolinians, dogs have rightfully earned their status as man’s best friend, as they provide a sense of protection and companionship, and are even shown to alleviate a person’s stress and high blood pressure.

However, many Americans have a sometimes justifiable fear of dogs, as they can often bite and injure when provoked, sometimes even without any apparent provocation at all. Biting dogs are often acting on instinct, or fear, and cannot be held responsible for their actions. That being said, it is the owner’s responsibility to protect those around when the dog is out in public, or when guests are invited onto the property. When owners fail to do so, and you or a loved one is subsequently bitten, you would be wise to speak with a Durham dog bite attorney as early as possible. An experienced Durham injury attorney will be able to help get you compensation for any suffering from an injury.

Consequences of a Dog Bite Injury

Dog bite victims often face emotional trauma, cosmetic surgeries, and a host of bacterial and viral infections. Children under the age of ten are especially vulnerable to dog bites due to their small size and limited situational awareness.

Without the help of an experienced dog bite lawyer in Durham, someone or their family may have to face this painful fallout alone, without adequate medical coverage to take care of their needs. With a dog bite, a person or their child are at risk for serious injuries as well as diseases which include, but are not limited to:

  • Rabies – A fatal neurological disease whose symptoms include delirium and anxiety. Once symptoms appear, it is almost always too late for treatment. Rabies is prevented by vaccine and, fortunately, rare in America today
  • Pasteurellosis – A bacterial disease that causes painful skin and wound infections. It is seen in half of all patients with infected dog bites, and in serious cases can cause nerve damage.
  • Capnocytophaga – A common bacteria in the mouths of dogs and cats that is particularly dangerous to people with compromised immune systems, such as those receiving steroid or cancer treatment.

If a person has been bitten by a dog, it is essential that they seek medical treatment as early as possible, to prevent the spread and permanent damage of an infection. This is not only important for their health, it can also play a vital part in building a strong case with their Durham dog bite attorney.

Steps to Take

When someone sustains a dog bite injury, the at-fault party’s insurer will do everything possible to pay them as little as possible for the damages. This is why it is important to seek information from an attorney, one experienced in federal, state, and local injury law. There are certain measures they can take to help obtain a fair and honest settlement, or prove their case should it go to trial. Some of these actions include:

  • Contacting a lawyer immediately. Across all states, personal injury cases are subject to statutes of limitations. There are times when accident victims do not recognize the full extent or cost of their injuries until they have already accepted less than they deserve
  • Requesting all medical records and documentation for the treatment for the dog bite injury. This information may be difficult to obtain later
  • Recording the owner’s name, address, and any other valid information regarding the dog
  • Taking photos of the injury, the site, and, if possible to do so safely, the dog

All of these actions can help you build a solid case to obtain the compensation you and your family deserves. Contact a compassionate and tenacious dog bite attorney in Durham to start your journey towards recovery as soon as possible.