Dogs may be loyal companions, but even the most friendliest and well-trained dog can snap. In fact, around 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year. This is why pet owners are obligated to maintain control of their dogs whenever they’re out in public or have visitors at their homes.
If you’re bitten by a dog, you may be entitled to compensation for lost wages, medical expenses, and other associated damages. Follow these steps to keep yourself protected after a dog bite incident.
Seek Medical Care
Your priority after being bitten by a dog should be your health. So if your dog bite was severe, get examined first to avoid infection. There’s also the risk of rabies, especially if the dog was a stray.
Get the Dog Owner’s Information
Identify the dog’s owner and take down their name, address, and phone number. Request the dog’s information as well such as proof of vaccines. If someone else was taking care of the dog at the time, such as a pet sitter, you’ll want to get their contact information as well. If the dog was a stray, contact animal control so they can attempt to capture it.
The more documentation you have about your dog bite incident, the better chances you have to collect damages. Take photos of your injuries, gather witness statements, and keep track of all your expenses involving the incident. If there are nearby security cameras, request a copy of the videos. If the dog escaped a yard because of a faulty gate latch or broken fence, take photos of those as well.
Report the Dog Bite Incident
Filing a police report is essential if you want to win a dog bite lawsuit. So after you’ve sought medical care, contact law enforcement to come to the scene and file a police report.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
If you think you have grounds for a dog bite lawsuit, contact a personal injury attorney. They’ll evaluate the circumstances and explain your legal options. If the dog owner has insurance, filing a liability claim with the insurance provider may be recommended. Otherwise, filing a civil court case may be better.
Dog Bite Attorneys in Oregon
If you’ve suffered a dog bite and want to know your legal options, contact OlsenDaines. We have offices in Oregon and Washington with personal injury attorneys ready to help you navigate every stage of the proceedings and negotiate with the opposing party. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation!