Even the most domesticated or well-trained dog can have spastic moments that lead to dog bites. Some owners make the mistake of assuming that their dog would never be one to bite another human, but the reality is that dog bites are increasing every year due to owners’ failure to take necessary precautions. Dog owners are too quick to believe that their dog is well-behaved and would never lash out at a small child or other person.
The reality is that owners need to care about taking preventative measures to ensure that no individual ever receives a dog bite. There are over 78.5 million dogs in the United States, and dog bite statistics will never decrease if owners continue to neglect their duty to protect other members of the public from potential dog bites.
National Dog Bite Statistics
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that over 4.5 million people receive dog bites every year. Over 885,000 individuals who receive a dog bite require professional medical help to treat their injuries. Even more troubling, about half of these individuals requiring serious medical attention are children. When one receives medical treatment for a dog bite injury, he or she usually requires additional help after the treatment. He or she may require physical therapy to rehabilitate an injured part of the body, such as an arm, leg or hand. He or she may also require reconstructive surgery. The CDC also states that over 27,000 people require specialized reconstructive surgery after they receive a dog bite injury.
Before one becomes a dog owner, the CDC recommends certain steps be taken to prepare for the many responsibilities of dog ownership. Here are some of the steps recommended by the CDC to reduce the incidence of dog bites and attacks:
- Find a breed that you can manage in your household
- Work with an animal shelter or rescue agency to find a breed appropriate for your home
- Avoid placing a dog within a home that has apprehensive children
- Spend some time with the dog before deciding to own it
Taking these steps can help one to ensure that he or she is ready for the role of being a dog owner. By choosing a breed that is appropriate for one’s home or circumstances, a dog owner can reduce the chances that a dog will out-lash or bite at others for improper care.
Illinois Statistics Concerning Dog Bites
Unfortunately, statistics indicate that Illinois is one of the leading states with an issue in regards to dog bites. A recent report from the Chicago Tribune revealed that Illinois is currently the second state with the most numerous dog bite claims in the United States. Every year, the insurance company State Farm Insurance releases a research study that tracks the number of dog bite claims in states throughout the U.S. The only state that had more dog bites than Illinois in 2012 was California. State Farm also reported that Illinois accounted for 10 percent of the total claims received by the insurance company in 2012. Some other interesting statistics concerning insurance coverage for dog bite claims in Illinois are the following:
- State Farm paid over $9 million for dog bite claims in Illinois
- State Farm received 337 dog bite claims for Illinois in 2012
- Over $489 million was paid out for nationwide dog bite claims in 2012
Illinois Dog Bite Victim and Injury Statistics
Dog bites also can be a cause of tragic deaths in the United States. Illinois faced two deaths as the result of dog bites in 2010. The majority of deaths were caused by the pit bull dog breed.
Dog bites can account for the following types of injuries:
There are also certain dog breeds that are known for causing injuries to adults and children. Pit bulls, Rottweilers, Cane Corsos, Fila Brasieros, Presa Canarios and other types of dog breeds have statistically been shown to cause more dog bite injuries than any other breed. Here are some of the statistics that can also reveal the serious threat that these breeds pose to society:
Financial Cost of Dog Bite Claims Paid By Insurance Companies
The average cost of a dog bite claim in 2011 was about $29,400. If you have been a victim of a dog bite attack, then you may be eligible to receive funds to compensate you for your injuries. The amount provided to dog bite victims has increased over the years. In 2003, the average cost of a dog bite claim was only $19,100. Now, that figure has increased by at least one-third.
Dog Bite Victim Statistics: Who Is Bitten By Canines?
In 2012, there were 38 fatalities resulting from dog bites. Dog bite statistics were consistent in showing that pitbulls and rottweilers accounted for the majority of dog bite injuries that year. Here are some other dog bite statistics from 2012:
- 30% of dog-bite victims lived with or near the dog
- 34% of fatalities involved more than one dog
- So-called “rescue” dogs accounted for 13% of injuries
- Family dogs caused 58% of all dog bite accidents
- 82% of dog bite incidents occurred on the owner’s property
For 2011, there were 32 fatalities resulting from dog bites. The figure for 2012 exceeds this number by 6 fatalities. Here are some other dog bite statistics for 2011:
- 39% of dog bite accidents involved more than one dog
- 58% of attacks impacted adults
- 42% of attacks impacted children
- Family dogs accounted for over 65% of dog bite accidents
Preventative Measures for Owners To Prevent Dog Bites
If you are a current dog owner, then there are some preventative measures that you should take to reduce the risk that your dog may out-lash in the future. The CDC reports that dog owners can take the following actions to reduce the risk that a dog may bite other people:
- Spay or neuter the dog to reduce its aggressive tendencies
- Use a trainer to teach your dog better behaviors
- Do not teach the dog aggressive games
- Properly socialize the dog before introducing it into the home
- Seek professional help if you notice aggressive tendencies in the dog
- Teach children basic safety tips in handling dogs
If you have a child, then you can teach that child certain protective techniques for being around dogs. You should teach the child to remain still if he or she is approached by an unfamiliar dog. You should also teach the child to roll into a ball and remain still if he or she is knocked over by a dog. A child should also always avoid eye contact with the dog. One last tip to teach to children is to never touch a dog while it is eating, sleeping or feeding puppies.
Individuals at Risk for Dog Bites
There are many individuals who can be at risk for suffering from a dog bite. People of all ages can be vulnerable for experiencing a dog bite if they attempt to play with an aggressive dog. If one is not familiar in playing with a certain type of breed, then he or she can also be at risk for suffering from a dog bite. Most commonly, children are the ones who are at risk for suffering from a dog bite. A child may run up to a dog and try to play with it. He or she may also be easily knocked over by a dog due to small size. It is important that parents recognize the risk that owning a dog can pose to young children. Parents should also make sure that they wait until a child is comfortable with animals before introducing a dog into the home. Otherwise, the child may be at risk for receiving a dog bite injury.Seeking Help from Chicago Dog Bite Lawyers
If you or a loved one has received a dog bite, then it is imperative to take action fast. Dog bite injury lawyers can assist you in this stressful time. Dog bite injury attorneys Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC can pursue a claim against the individuals who are the owners of the dog and deal with the insurance claims process for you. Contact our Chicago dog bite injury lawyers today to get the help you need.