Dogs may be known as a man’s best friend. But not every k9 is well-trained or has a responsible owner, which can put anyone who gets in its way at risk.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 4 million dog bites occur in the U.S. every year. Out of that number, approximately 800,000 of those cases require medical treatment.
Why dogs may lash out
Depending on the circumstances, there are several reasons why a dog may attack another person. In some cases, a dog may feel they’re in a stressful situation and go after someone to protect themselves or their owners. Other times, they may be sick or injured and want to be left alone. Dogs may also bite while playing, wrestling or a game of tug-of-war may get them excited, leading to a potential injury.
What victims can do after an attack
For those who were bitten, they may want to do the following:
- Administer first aid: The severity of the bite can often determine the type of medical treatment needed. If the bite penetrated the victim’s skin, they might want to clean the area with warm water and soap and use pressure with a towel to stop the bleeding.
- Get information about the dog’s medical history: Those who were bitten by a dog may be at higher risk of getting rabies. If the victim doesn’t know if the dog was vaccinated or not, they may want to contact their local animal control agency.
- Identify the owner: If the dog has an owner, it may be best to swap contact information. They may be able to provide better information about the dog’s medical history. In some cases, an owner may have animal bite liability insurance that could be used to cover medical costs for the injury.
Dog bites can have long-lasting impacts
Dog bites can cause victims long-term suffering as their injuries can interfere with their everyday lives and burden them with medical bills. Those in Illinois who were attacked by a dog bite may want to contact an attorney who can help them get the proper compensation.