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Dog Bite Rabies Attorney

Dogs and RabiesDog bites are a growing problem in Illinois and throughout the U.S., particularly in cities. In Chicago, for instance, the population is high, there is little space available for abandoned animals, and thus the rate of fear biting goes up significantly. The most common complication from a dog bite is rabies.

Understanding Rabies

Rabies is a virus that affects humans and other warm-blooded animals, and it can spread through both blood and saliva. Almost all modern cases of rabies in humans occur due to a bite from an animal. In areas like Chicago, dogs are the most common cause, but cases can also result from cats and ferrets.

Once the rabies virus affects a person, there is an incubation period. That period can be as short as two days or as long as three months. During this period, the virus works itself along peripheral nerves until it reaches the central nervous system (CNS) and then brain. Symptoms start when the virus reaches the CNS, and that the point, the disease is fatal more than 99 percent of the time.

Rabies Treatment

Rabies from dog bites is treatable, but as a general rule, the treatment must occur before the person begins to demonstrate symptoms. Such after-the-fact treatment is called PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis).

The first step is to wash the bite area thoroughly with soap and water, and the second is to receive a series of injections over a two-week period. The series includes four parts rabies vaccine and one part human rabies immunoglobulin. When this treatment is applied prior to the virus reaching the CNS, it is effective 100 percent of the time, without fail. It is for this reason that modern medicine recommends getting a rabies shot whenever there is even the slightest possibility that infection may occur.

Likelihood of Infection

In the U.S., there are usually only a couple of human rabies cases per year, and that is in large part due to awareness of the virus and medicine’s ability to contend with it. Such statistics should not, however, provide anyone with false confidence. Consider that in a country like India, there are more than 20,000 deaths from rabies each year. In the U.S., and many other countries, rabies has all been eliminated in domestic animals. Nevertheless, it still occurs due to home breeding or because of general negligence, and there is a very high likelihood of getting rabies from dog bites when the animals are infected.

Rabies Prevention

The important aspect of rabies prevention is vaccinations for dogs. If in Chicago all dogs were vaccinated, then rabies would be all but eliminated and the number of treatments needed near zero. Most Illinois counties have ordinances in place that require people to register animals and get them rabies vaccinations. It is your civic duty to comply.

Family dogs are not the major issue with prevention, however. Most cases of rabies from dog bites occur due to abandoned and resident dogs. Resident dogs are dogs that are owned but basically left on their own. That type of dog can be particularly dangerous because it may give the perception of being safe but is in fact very dangerous.

Due to home breeding and the like, the need for rabies treatments is actually on the rise in Chicago and other Illinois cities. Fortunately, state law requires a dog owner to pay for all medical costs and damages related to a dog attack or bite regardless of whether it actually resulted in rabies or not. If someone in your family has been bitten by a dog in Illinois, Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC is committed to ensuring that your legal rights are protected.

Client Reviews
Jonathan Rosenfeld was professionally objective, timely, and knowledgeable. Also, his advice was extremely effective regarding my case. In addition, Jonathan was understanding and patient pertaining to any of my questions or concerns. I was very happy with the end result and I highly recommend Jonathan Rosenfeld. Michonne Proulx
Extremely impressed with this law firm. They took control of a bad motorcycle crash that left my uncle seriously injured. Without any guarantee of a financial recovery, they went out and hired accident investigators and engineers to help prove how the accident happened. I am grateful that they worked on a contingency fee basis as there was no way we could have paid for these services on our own. Ethan Armstrong
This lawyer really helped me get compensation for my motorcycle accident case. I know there is no way that I could have gotten anywhere near the amount that Mr. Rosenfeld was able to get to settle my case. Thank you. Daniel Kaim
Jonathan helped my family heal and get compensation after our child was suffered a life threatening injury at daycare. He was sympathetic and in constant contact with us letting us know all he knew every step of the way. We were so blessed to find Jonathan! Giulia
Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial. Lisa