In 2014 there were forty four fatalities due to dog bites. Just like people, dogs have personal boundaries and can act aggressively or unpredictably when approached in a disrespectful manner. It’s important to protect yourself and your children from possible bites; and there are simple steps you can take that will help minimize the possibility of a bite.
If you want to approach a dog, be sure that you ask the owner for permission first, and if they say yes you still need to be mindful of the dog’s body language and keep a safe distance. Do not try to approach a dog that is without an owner, or is restrained to a post or behind a fence.
Some signs a dog may feel uncomfortable and feel the need to bite are: a tensed body, stiff tail, pulled back ears, furrowed brow, eyes rolled so the whites are visible, yawning, flicking tongue, intense stare, backing away.
If a dog is exhibiting the above signs it is very important that you back away slowly from the dog while maintaining eye contact. Do not run. If you run, instinct may drive the dog to chase you.
If you are bitten or attacked by a dog, try not to panic. After you get away from the dog, immediately wash the wound thoroughly with soap and warm water. Contact your physician for additional care and advice. Report the bite to your local animal care and control agency. Tell the animal control official everything you know about the dog, including his owner’s name and the address where he lives. If the dog is a stray, tell the animal control official what the dog looks like, where you saw him, whether you’ve seen him before and in which direction he went.
Virginia allows those injured by dog bites to seek compensation from negligent owners, but the state’s dog bite laws can be rather complicated, especially if the dog has no previous history of violent behavior. For this reason, it is very important to secure an experienced Richmond dog bite lawyer immediately. The attorneys at Collier & Collier, P.C. pursue all legal avenues in order to provide our clients with the results and compensation they deserve.
If you or a loved one is injured by a dog bite you can call Collier & Collier P.C. at 877.825.0543 for an experienced personal injury lawyer.