Non-Bite Dog Attack
Dog bites and attacks can cause serious injuries, even if the injury isn't an actual bite. Dogs can also cause injuries that are not immediately visible or painful, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). These types of injuries can lead to long-term physical and emotional issues for the victim.
If you have been attacked by a dog or suffered other harm at the hands of your pet's owner, contact Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC today! Our personal injury attorneys are legal advocates to accident victims harmed by another's negligence.
Call a Chicago, IL dog bite lawyer at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) or use the contact form today for legal advice and schedule a free consultation. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our legal team remains private through an attorney-client relationship.
Getting Hurt in Dog Attacks
Many people are not aware that there are many types of dog attacks that do not involve bites. However, non-bite injuries from dog attacks can be very serious and potentially life-threatening.
For example, a non-bite injury could be an infection if the animal carries bacteria or parasites on its paws, fur, or teeth.
Another type would be abrasions caused by contact with dirt or gravel when trying to escape the animal's attack. Readers need to know about these types of injuries because they could save their lives if they ever encounter one themselves.
Many of these accidents involve the need to seek medical attention to avoid health complications and high medical costs to treat injuries suffered in a non-bite attack.
In addition, the injured party is often involved in an accident due to the dog's non-aggressive behavior when the victim pulled the dog's tail, pinched three years, or made some other harmful physical contact.
Common Non-Bite Injuries From Dog Attacks
The following list identifies various types of non-bite injuries that victims could sustain in a dog attack:
Skin Infections / Parasites
Bacteria and parasites often reside on animal fur and can easily transfer to a person's skin if they touch it. In some cases, the chemicals used to rid pets of fleas and ticks may also cause a negative reaction in people. Dogs may also carry ringworm, a fungal infection resulting in a red and itchy scaly patch of skin on the dog owner that typically does not affect its pet. A victim could experience an allergic reaction to either of these conditions, which could have long-term health effects if not treated by a medical professional.
Abrasions: If someone tries to escape from an attacking dog, they might get scrapes or abrasions when they try to get away. These injuries may require stitches and other medical treatment depending on the severity of the injury. Even if it is not painful at first, these types of injuries could cause infections over time.
Tetanus affects humans when they suffer a deep cut and contact with contaminated soil, dust, or manure. It is a serious illness that causes muscle spasms and other painful symptoms. The bacteria become active in the body when dirt enters the wound while escaping a dog attack.
Serious Internal Injuries
While it is very rare, there are reports of people dying from internal injuries they experienced in a non-bite dog attack. There are cases where the victim fell on their back when a dog attacked, which caused crushing tissue and organ damage.
Another case involved an older woman who had her spleen ruptured after falling onto it while trying to escape a dog attack.
Depending on the dog's size, some non-bite injuries could be more serious than others depending on where they are located on the body. Dog bites, scratches, or other injuries that cause lacerations or punctures can expose deeper tissue layers which are also vulnerable to infection.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a serious mental health condition that affects millions of people. When someone experiences or witnesses an event where they fear for their lives, it can trigger PTSD symptoms to appear. These include nightmares, flashbacks, anxiety attacks, and more. For example, a dog attack may not seem too dangerous at first glance, but it could have lasting effects and trigger long-term PTSD symptoms.
Non-bite injuries from dog attacks can be very serious and potentially life-threatening if a medical professional does not treat them. While many of these types of injuries heal on their own, victims need to know that an attorney may be able to help them pursue financial compensation if the attack was someone else's fault.
Many medical professionals helped dog attack victims overcome dog fright when around a family or neighbor's dog after suffering psychological injuries caused when the dog attacked.
Get Medical Help for Non-Bite Dog Attack Injuries
Were you or a loved one severely injured in a dog attack? Getting immediate medical help is crucial to your health and well-being. However, only a competent doctor with the best diagnostic tools can accurately determine the extent of your injuries to recommend the best medical treatment and care.
Treatment could include antibiotics, antivirals, pain medication, skin grafts, emotional support for PTSD, and other forms of therapy. It is not an exhaustive list of your treatment options, so do not hesitate to ask your doctor what you should expect for recovery.
Aggressive Dog Breeds
Illinois has initiated leash laws prohibiting dogs from running at large, trespassing, and causing havoc in the neighborhood. Unfortunately, some dog breeds are more aggressive than others. Data reveals that some of these aggressive dogs include:
- Pit Bull
- German shepherd
- Doberman Pinscher
- Chow Chow
- Saint Bernard
- Greater Swiss Mountain Dog
- Tibetan Mastiff
Most of these dogs can be identified by their large body size, boxy heads, and drooping ears. Even a dog jumping on children and adults while playing could lead to serious injuries. Being injured by the dog's claws can cause permanent disabilities if ligaments are tendons are permanently damaged.
In one case, a dangerous dog attacks the victim, never biting them, but rather knocking them down onto the ground, leading to crushing their organs when the dog lunges.
Fortunately, the victim's family could file a personal injury claim using an experienced personal injury attorney to ensure they receive fair compensation from recovering financial damages. Our law firm has helped dog attack victims throughout Illinois for years, filing claims and building cases based on dog bite statutes and local ordinances.
Numerous Illinois dog bite statutes control aggressive breeds in the community. Under strict liability law, dog owners can be held legally responsible for the victim's injuries after being involved in a non-bite dog attack.
Fourthly, Illinois's one-bite rule does not require that the dog attack involve biting, but instead, the dog's propensity for being dangerous.
Dangerous Dog Breeds
Even though pit bulls are not the only aggressive dog breeds globally, they kill more people than any other breed. Many municipalities have initiated laws prohibiting or restricting ownership of this type of dog. The following are the ten most dangerous dog breeds in the world:
- Pit Bull Terrier
- German Shepherd dog
- Bull Mastiff
- Chow Chow
- Doberman Pinscher
- Presa Canario *not recognized in the AKC group, but by the American Dog Breeders Association.
- Great Dane
- Husky/Fila Brasileiro *not recognized in AKC group but is a member of United Kennel Club
Many other dog breeds can be harmless or even loved by children and adults alike compared to the list above. These same breeds are also very loyal in some cases, making them the ideal pet for family homes.
When a Dog Owner Is Liable
Under Illinois law, dog owners must take preventive measures to prevent a dog from injuring a person or another animal. In addition, a victim must show that the owner had knowledge of a past incident or could have been predicted if they were aware of certain facts about the dog.
For example, some breeds are more aggressive than others, so it is common sense to look for those types of dogs. It may not always be due to a lack of training when a dog attacks since some dogs can be naturally more aggressive than others.
To prove this element in court, a victim must show that the owner was careless or negligent. For example, a dog owner who leaves their pet off the leash in a public area is not taking proper preventive measures to protect others potentially. When a jury sees the evidence from the case, they may agree with this assessment, making it easier to win compensation from them.
To prove negligence on the dog owner's part, a personal injury lawyer may need to talk with people who have been in contact with the dog.
Victims should provide as much information as possible, which could include what the dog looked like, whether or not it was wearing a collar, and more. Then, by calling a non-bite dog attack attorney, they could quickly gather evidence supporting their case.
A case like this could lead to a financial settlement that covers the victim's medical bills, lost wages, and more. It may also include compensation for their pain and suffering if there were lasting effects after the attack, like PTSD symptoms. While these cases are rare, dog bite victims need to know what they should do if this thing happens to them.
Most lawyers are willing to take on cases where the dog owner was responsible for an injury that did not involve biting. However, they need to have enough evidence to prove negligence, so victims need to work with a personal injury lawyer to help them collect that information to make a strong case.
How to Find the Right Attorney
To avoid any problems in court, victims need to find an attorney they can trust and rely on when going up against a big company or insurance agency. Personal injury lawyers may offer a free consultation where clients can talk about their case, giving them more information on what they can do next.
The dog owner should pay for everything related to the attack, including any long-term injuries that resulted in PTSD symptoms. Some of these claims could go up to $1 million when considering past and future medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, permanent scars or disfigurement, and more.
While it can be challenging to prove negligence on the part of a dog owner, there may be a financial settlement that will help victims after a serious attack by their pet.
No-Bite Dog Attack Settlements
Many victims injured in a non-bite dog attack have negotiated settlements with pet owners and their insurance companies to pay for damages.
In Illinois, in recent years, some of the largest settlements have been as follows:
- In 2015, a family received $40 million from their neighbors who owned four pit bulls that attacked them while they were on a walk. The two youngest children suffered serious injuries and emotional trauma after being bitten in the face. The owners did not have homeowners insurance to pay for damages, so the case went to court. The children were awarded $36 million, and the parents received $4 million. Due to the family's young ages, their lawyer suggested taking a settlement instead of waiting for ten years or more.
- In 2014, one victim in Chicago received an award of about $28 million after being attacked by two dogs that belonged to her neighbor. The award was divided into $12 million for past and future medical bills and $16 million in non-economic damages paid by the dog's owner and an insurance company.
- In 2012, the family of a 2-year old girl who died after being mauled by two pit dogs was awarded $18 million. It took jurors only four hours to reach this decision about the dog owner's negligence based on the victims' medical records.
- In 2009, a single mother of six was awarded $2 million after her two teenage sons were mauled by their neighbor's Rottweiler at night when they went to get a tool from his garage. The young men spent a few days in the hospital and had a lot of physical therapy as part of their recovery due to the dog's behavior.
In each of these dog attack cases, the victims sought help from a personal injury lawyer, who helped them figure out what they should do after being attacked by a dog without first being bitten. It is important for anyone who has filed a lawsuit to win their case before considering any settlement offers.
While large settlements sound good in the short term, most are not enough to pay for all of the future medical expenses, surgeries, treatments, and other costs that may be involved in recovery.
Full recovery is not always available after a dog attacks the victim. Many victims need some medical attention to treat their dog bite injuries, bone fractures, or other physical injuries that occurred during the event.
How a Non-Bite Dog Attack Lawyer Can Help
Dog bites and dog attacks can be very serious, potentially causing severe injuries and even death. Were you or a loved one involved in an animal attack? If so, it is extremely important to contact an experienced Illinois personal injury lawyer right away.
A personal injury attorney at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC can help you get the compensation you may be entitled to by filing a personal injury or wrongful death claim on your behalf. Our goal is to provide you with the legal guidance and representation you need so that you can focus on recovering from this traumatic experience. We understand how difficult it can be for victims to deal with the aftermath of a dog attack, which is why we want to make this process as easy as possible for you.
We have a team made up of some of the best lawyers in Illinois who bring years of experience and client satisfaction to every case we take on. Countless successful settlements and verdicts show that our attorneys know how to get results. As a result, we can help you get the compensation you deserve for your injuries, medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and more.
Call us today at (888) 424-5757 to discuss your case with a lawyer in a free consultation on a contingency basis. Our law firm currently represents dog bite injury clients throughout Illinois, including Cook County, DuPage County, Kane County, Lake County, Peoria County, Sangamon County, and Winnebago County.