Dog bites happen far more frequently than most people realize. Over 4.5 million people suffer from dog bites in the United States every year. Fortunately, only one out of every five of these bites requires medical attention.
Dogs bite for a litany of reasons, such as feeling scared or not receiving proper training. You know you need to see a doctor after the bite, but you do not want your friend’s dog to be put down. Keep in mind, it is rare for local authorities to put a dog down after one incident. The most important thing is to protect your rights and receive the necessary compensation.
1. Seek medical attention
It is better to be safe than sorry. Although the bite wound may not seem too severe, you want to make sure an infection does not develop. Get yourself to a doctor’s office or urgent care center. Before going to the doctor, you should take photos of your wound. This will assist you later for insurance purposes. Before leaving the scene, ask the dog’s owner if the dog has received all its vaccinations. This is information the doctor will definitely ask you.
2. Talk to the dog owner’s insurance agency
Anyone with a dog should have some kind of insurance policy to protect against dog bites. This is occasionally separate coverage. Other times, it is part of a comprehensive homeowner’s insurance policy. The insurance company may offer you a settlement, and you want to review the offer with your attorney first. You want to make sure the compensation covers all expenses you incurred from the wound.
3. Report to a local health director
You need to file a dog bite report with local authorities. In North Carolina, this typically involves quarantining the animal for 10 days to make sure it does not have rabies. Euthanasia is rare.