If you were attacked by a dog, your first instinct is probably to defend yourself. Many dogs bite very quickly, out of fright, nervousness or misdirected protectiveness. If someone else’s dog injures you, the owner is likely to be legally liable for your injury. You may want to check with the local animal control department records to see if that dog has any prior attacks. If the dog has been officially labeled as “dangerous” the owner may be fined, jailed or have the dog destroyed or removed from the city.
The first step to take if a dog attacks you is to gather all the names and contact information of the dog’s owner and witnesses. Even if you aren’t sure you will be asking for compensation, you may change your mind if your injuries are worse than you think.
The next step is to get the story from any witnesses to make sure they can back up your version of the story in case the dog owner disagrees or if you don’t know who owns the dog. Animal control authorities may be able to track the owner of the dog from your description to help find its owner.
The third step is to get medical attention if you need it. If you injury is serious enough to require medical attention then get it quickly. Make sure to keep a record of your medical visits and copies of bills. You will have a greater chance of compensation when you document all medical expenses paid.
Lastly, report the incident to animal control authorities. This is extremely important if the dog didn’t have any tags and you don’t know who owns it. City or county authorities may need to have a dog quarantined if it bit someone and could possibly have rabies.
We hope that you won’t need to use these steps but in case you do get attacked by a dog, this will help you take proper action.