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Dog bites can detrimentally impact a victim’s life. Victims may suffer from debilitating injuries and hefty medical bills as a result of the incident. Not only can dog bites cause severe injuries, but they can also inflict financial and emotional hardship as well.
Dog bite attacks invoke a broad variety of laws and practices that may vary depending on the specifics of the incident. Applicable laws will differ depending on where the injury occurred.
Fort Collins utilizes a unique set of codes and statutes to govern liability in dog bite cases. So, if you or your loved one was attacked by a dog in Fort Collins, call Zinda Law Group at (800) 863-5312 for a free case evaluation with a Fort Collins dog bite injury lawyer.
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how serious is my dog bite?
Dog bite injuries are typically categorized based on an objective evaluation of the wounds created; recoverable damages may be dependent, at least partly, on this evaluation. Fortunately, wound experts created a sliding scale that assesses the severity of dog bites to make this evaluation easier for victims. According to Dr. Dunbar’s Dog Bite Scale, there are six levels of dog bite attacks:
Level one bites involve obnoxious or aggressive behavior, but no skin-contact with teeth. Level one attacks are usually frightening, but not painful.
Level two bites involve skin contact by teeth, but no skin puncture. Victims may suffer from skin nicks that are less than one tenth of an inch deep and slight bleeding caused by forward or lateral movement of the dog’s teeth against the victim’s skin, but no vertical punctures.
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Level three bites are usually associated with minor punctures and lacerations. These bites tend to include one to four punctures from a single bite with no puncture deeper than half the length of the dog’s canine teeth. Level three lacerations go in a single direction and are usually caused by the victim pulling away or trying to retreat after the initial bite.
Level four bites involve one to four punctures from a single bite with at least one puncture deeper than half the length of the dog’s canine teeth. Victims of level four bites may also have deep bruising around the wound or lacerations in both directions. Level four bites usually require medical treatment.
Level five bites are serious. These attacks involve multiple bites with at least two level 4 bites or multiple bites with at least one level 4 bite in each. Victims of level five bites usually require extensive medical treatment and rehabilitation.
Level six bites are fatal. These bites are a mauling that usually kills the victim.
There are many different kinds of dog bites. Dog bites can range in severity, with some inflicting only minor discomfort to others causing the death of the victim. If you have been attacked by a dog, you should first categorize your injuries according to the aforementioned dog bite scale. Determining which level dog bite you suffered from may help you file your dog bite report and seek compensation from the responsible party. If you are unfamiliar with the filing process, you should contact a Fort Collins dog bite injury attorney who can help guide you through filing your dog bite report with the appropriate authority.
COMMONALITIES AMONG DOG BITES
Although dog bite incidents may appear unpredictable, experts claim that many dog bites are preventable. If prevention is impossible, knowing the patterns and causes of dog bites may help pinpoint liability in a subsequent lawsuit. On the rare occasion that a dog does bite a human, data indicates that there are patterns that generally hold true, depending on the situation. These patterns include:
Escaped Animals Attack More
Unsurprisingly, escaped dogs running loose are the most common circumstance that gives rise to a dog bite. In these situations, animals usually exhibit fear and territorial behavior. These afraid animals are the most likely to act out aggressively and cause harm to approaching humans.
Human Intervention Can Be Dangerous
A high number of bites occur when a human attempts to intervene between two or more dogs involved in a fight. Although the intervening individual may not be the original target, threatened dogs may respond violently and injure the person, even if only by accident.
Dogs are Territorial
Bites at a dog’s home typically occur when the dog is protecting their own property, food, or toys. Many animal organizations report that violations of a dog’s personal space or property can result in aggressive behavior due to a canine’s territorial nature.
Prevention is Key
If an attack has yet to occur, there are a number of steps that individuals should take to avoid becoming the victim of a dog bite. Specifically, people should avoid interacting, confronting, or antagonizing unfamiliar animals, especially without the permission of the owner. Additionally, owners should avoid introducing aggressive animals to strangers or creating uncomfortable situations for their animal.
There are many commonalities among dog bites across the country and across breeds. Many dog bites can be prevented through an adherence to safety guidelines and instructions. Since every bite is not preventable, it is imperative that those who are frequently around animals know what to do if bitten by an unknown dog.
DO I NEED TO SEEK MEDICAL TREATMENT AFTER A DOG BITE?
Dog bites can happen for a variety of reasons and typically range in severity. When dealing with dog bites, there are many different medical treatments available depending on the specifics of your injuries. These injuries can range from superficial to even fatal wounds.
If you sustain a superficial or puncture wound from a dog bite, it is important to clean the wound with running water and disinfectant immediately after the attack. Afterwards, medical experts recommend applying a topical antibiotic and covering the wound with a clean bandage. Depending on the severity of your injuries, you may need to seek immediate medical attention, especially if you suspect that the animal may be rabid or carrying a disease. Even if you believe your wounds to be minor, experts still recommend visiting a medical provider for a professional evaluation.
If you are bitten by an unknown dog, the American Red Cross suggests that you do not try to stop, catch, or hold the animal. Instead, you should contact Animal Control and call 911 so that you can receive any necessary vaccinations as soon as possible.
filing a dog bite report in fort collins
If you have been bitten or attacked by a dog, it is imperative that you report the incident to the proper authority. Notably, many jurisdictions require that victims and owners report incidents to protect the community at large.
After you have sought medical treatment for your injuries, your next step should be filing a dog bite report. If you were bitten or attacked in Fort Collins, you will need to file your report with the Larimer Humane Society. Larimer Humane Society partners with the City of Fort Collins to provide animal protection and control services. The Society aims to uphold state laws and local ordinances to keep people and pets safe. According to the organization’s website, there are three ways in which a dog bite victim can file a report.
Dog bite victims can access an online form on the Larimer Humane Society website. This form can be submitted through their online platform at any time of the day.
Dog bite victims can also submit a dog bite report through the telephone. Victims are encouraged to contact the organization by calling (970) 226-3647 during normal business hours.
Lastly, dog bite victims can file a report in person by visiting the Larimer Humane Society’s offices at 3501 E. 71st Street, Loveland, CO 80528.
After you have filed your dog bite report, Society representatives will investigate your complaint and make an official report of their findings. This record could prove useful if you decide to pursue legal redress for your injuries. Dog bite reports often include detailed accounts of the incident, indicate any previous incidents involving the animal, and provide a warning to others in the community. Filing a report not only protects your financial interests, but also the safety of your community.
GET HELP FROM ZINDA LAW GROUP’S FORT COLLINS DOG BITE LAWYERS
Dog bite attacks can be frightening and devastating for victims. Dog bite victims may be left with hefty debt, grief, and trauma as a result of the incident. These claims can require substantial legal and factual analysis because of the detail-intensive nature of dog bite cases.
All victims and owners should be sure to file a dog bite report immediately after an incident. Filing a dog bite report protects your community’s people and pets in the long run. If you were injured in a dog bite attack, you should contact a lawyer who handles personal injury cases as soon as possible. An experienced attorney may be able to help you assess liability, file a dog bite report, and seek compensation accordingly.
At Zinda Law Group, we have the knowledge and resources necessary to help you pursue the highest compensation possible. Zinda Law Group may be able to provide you with personalized and quality consultation about the specifics of your legal claim. Moreover, the sooner you contact our office, the better we may be able to serve you.
If you or your loved one was attacked by a dog in Fort Collins, call Zinda Law Group at (800) 863-5312 for a free consultation with one of our Fort Collins personal injury lawyers. You don’t owe us anything unless we win your case. That’s our No Win, No Fee Guarantee.