Gary P. Heslin
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Experienced Pennsylvania Personal Injury and Car Accident Attorney serving Northeast Philadelphia

Dog attacks where young children are involved can leave the victim scarred for life. Here is why a dog attack lawsuit is the best way to get compensation for them! Did you know that dog attacks cause more ER visits for children then youth activities, domestic violence, and burns? Dog bite attorney in philadelphia

The fact of the matter is that more than half of children under the age of twelve have been bitten or attacked by a dog. Not too mention, half of that number happens within the home or the neighborhood where the victim lives. Lastly, most of the bites tend to happen around the face, head, and neck area, which leads to stitches, painful rabies shots, plastic surgery, or in some very major cases, death. 

Typically, these numbers are dominantly smaller children and toddlers. However, children are likely to develop PTSD from dog bites that can often extend as far as their adulthood. And even then, some young victims require years of psychological support regardless.

So, what should you do if your child is bit?

First Steps After A Dog Bite 

After an incident occurs, be sure that you and your child are secured and in a safe place away from the animal. You want to make sure that you treat your child as best as you can while doing the following steps.

1. Call 911

Never wait to call 911. This should be the first step. No matter what, do it right away, because in the time it takes for the emergency services to arrive, you can spend that time helping your child. That shortens the length of time of the incident and their arrival. 

Make sure that you state that your child was attacked by a dog to the dispatcher and you need medical services as quickly as possible. You want to stay on the line to answer the dispatcher’s questions as well. 

It doesn’t matter if you think your child’s injuries come across as minor, you still want to make sure they are taken care of immediately. Minor injuries that aren’t treated have a tendency of becoming major ones. Treatment is a necessity so ensure that your child receives a medical evaluation right away. 

2. Identify Who The Owner Of The Dog Is

Make sure that you find the dog owner and notify them right away of the dog attack if they weren’t present. You need to be sure to grab all of their necessary contact information like name, address, and phone number. And if they happen to have homeowners’ insurance, make sure that you obtain the name, policy number, and contact information for the company.

Make sure that they know that because of their dog, your child was injured enough that medical attention was required. 

3. Contact Animal Control After A Dog Bite

This is a very, very important step. You must file a complaint with your local municipality’s animal control department in a timely manner. This helps to make sure that the city takes the appropriate measures when it comes to the animal’s quarantine or protect the public from future incidents of the same nature. 

The report also creates substantiated evidence of the date, time, and the circumstance of the attack. And when it comes to a personal injury claim, this helps to prove owner negligence and strengthens your case.

4. Gather Dog Attack Evidence

Evidence is always key in any claim. You want to make sure that you gather as much evidence from the scene as possible and properly store it. Taking the time to gather it and preserving it the right way helps to strengthen the case and helps with getting your child the compensation they deserve. 

The bloodied clothes are a perfect example of very key evidence. Do not wash or attempt to remove any sort of blood stain from the clothes your child was wearing when the incident happened. Instead, place all of the clothes in a bag and then label it with the date and time of the incident. 

More compelling evidence to strengthen your case would be pictures and videos of the incident or of any evidence. Take pictures of the owner’s fence for any holes, a broken leash that the dog was on, any blood on the ground, and if possible or safe, a picture or video of the dog who did it. This type of evidence helps strengthen what you already have. Also, document your child’s recovery process. Is there any scarring? Is there any residual damage? 

Witness statements are also great forms of evidence designed to strengthen your case. Having good witness testimony from someone who has no sort of personal or financial interest in the case means that the insurance companies and the jurors will have to take them seriously. For this step, make sure you get the name and contact information of each person who saw the incident on whatever you possibly can. Make sure that the witnesses describe the incident in vivid detail. And if all true, it’s very important they state that there was no provocation from your child towards the dog. 

Hire a Personal Injury Attorney

Hiring a personal injury attorney is one of the best things you can do. If you or a loved one was injured in an incident involving a dog, don’t hesitate to call or email me. For over 30 years I have helped the people of Philadelphia get the compensation they deserve. And if you believe you have a claim, schedule a free consultation today!

 

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