Dog Bite Attorney in St. Louis MO Answers Your Questions
Dog Bite FAQs
Being attacked by a dog is painful and emotionally traumatizing. If a vicious dog has attacked you, there are probably a number of questions going through your head.
- Will I be able to recover?
- Will there be permanent disfigurement?
- Who will pay for the medical bills?
- How will I pay for cosmetic surgery to repair the scars caused by the attack?
The first step to getting the support you need is to learn about your legal rights and options. If you or a loved one has been injured in a dog attack, an experienced St. Louis dog bite attorney will fight to help maximize your recovery. Here are answers to some common questions related to dog attacks.
- What should I do if a strange dog approaches?
- What should I do immediately following a dog bite incident?
- Who is responsible for my medical bills?
- What could prevent me from receiving the support I need?
- What is my claim worth?
- What breeds of dogs are commonly dangerous?
Q: What should I do if a strange dog approaches?
A: Try to remain still and avoid eye contact. If the dog attacks, protect your hands and face. If you are knocked down, curl up into a ball to cover your face and neck. It’s rarely advisable to run away from a dangerous dog. Call for help. Remain at the scene if you can do so safely and try to determine who owns the dog.
Q: What should I do immediately following a dog bite incident?
A: You should clean out your wounds with soap and water right away. If there is any torn skin, you should see a doctor immediately. There is always the potential risk of rabies, scarring or other bacterial infections. Take pictures of your injuries and the location where the incident occurred. Collect information from eyewitnesses. Preserve any type of physical evidence you may have such as torn or bloody clothing.
Q: Who is responsible for my medical bills?
A: Torn flesh, punctured wounds, damaged nerves, disfigurement and broken bones are all common injuries that result from dog attacks. The resulting treatment, surgeries, rehabilitation and psychological counseling is often costly. Missouri law allows dog bite victims to hold the dog owner accountable. Most homeowner’s insurance policies in Missouri cover dog bites.
Q: What could prevent me from receiving the support I need?
A: Missouri law imposes the strict liability law on dog owners, which means that dog owners can be held financially responsible for the injuries, damages and losses their pets cause – on public or private property. This is true whether the dog has attacked anyone in the past or whether the owner was aware of the dog’s past viciousness.
Q: What is my claim worth?
A: Every claim is different. Ideally, your dog bite claim will result in financial support for your current and future medical bills, lost wages, and compensation for disfigurement. Dog bite victims can also recover for physical pain and mental anguish.
The St. Louis personal injury lawyers at Page Law have been representing dog attack victims for more than a decade. We understand how a dog bite incident can have a lasting impact on you and your family. We are here to fight for you and help get the full value for your claim. Contact us at (314) 322-8515 to schedule a free consultation.
Q: What breeds of dogs are commonly dangerous?
A special report published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association looked at the breeds of dogs involved in fatal dog bite attacks in the United States. The study only looked at about 72 percent of the American dog-related deaths during that 19-year period, because it excluded bite deaths with no information on the attacking dog’s breed, deaths caused by working police dogs and deaths not directly caused by bite trauma. Even so, it found more than 300 deaths in that 19-year period. And most of those deaths — 67 percent — were attributed to Rottweilers and pit bull-type dogs. Other breeds identified as likely to be involved in a fatal attack included the following breeds and their mixes, in decreasing order of likelihood:
- German shepherds
- Wolf-dog hybrids
- Mutts of unknown background
- Chow Chow
All of these dogs were involved in 10 or more biting deaths during the 19 years the study examined. Many of these were bred as guard, hunting or police dogs; all are larger breeds. The next most likely dogs to bite, Great Danes and St. Bernards, are two of the biggest breeds that exist.