What To Do If Attacked By A Dog

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What To Do If Attacked By A Dog

Dogs are man’s best friend for a reason.  They are lovable, loyal companions, that make excellent family pets.  However, sometimes man’s best friend isn’t so friendly, and people can suffer severe injuries when attacked by a dog.

Most jurisdictions have laws that make dog owners strictly liable for the damage their dogs cause.  Strict liability makes the dog owner responsible for damages caused by the dog, regardless of anything the dog owner did or did not do.  In Ontario, the Dog Owners’ Liability Act states at provision 2(1) “The owner of a dog is liable for damages resulting from a bite or attack by the dog on another person or domestic animal”.  This liability can only be reduced by any fault or negligence of the person who was attacked by the dog.

Dog owners may have insurance that will pay for damage caused by their dog.  Some homeowner’s insurance policies, and general liability policies, provide this coverage.  If your dog has caused damage, you should review all of your insurance policies to see if you have coverage.

If you have been injured by a dog, beyond seeking medical attention for your injuries in a timely manner, it is very important that you obtain the name and contact information of the dog’s owner.  If you leave the scene of the dog attack without this information, you may be unable to determine the identity of the owner at a later time.  You should also obtain the names and contact information of any witnesses to the dog attack.  If the witnesses support your version of events, they can assist with your claim down the road, should the dog owner allege that you were partly to blame for the attack.

A picture is worth a thousand words.  If you have been attacked by a dog, take pictures of the dog, of the people who were with the dog, and of your injuries.  The photos of the dog and people, will assist with identifying the dog’s owner if you are unable to obtain the dog owner’s name and contact information at the scene.  The pictures of your injuries can help later on with your claim by showing the extent and severity of your injuries.

After you have left the scene of the attack, and have obtained appropriate medical care, you should report the attack to your local public health department.  Making a report creates an official record of the attack, and can allow the local authorities to determine whether the dog is a danger to the public.

Remember to speak to a personal injury lawyer if you are ever attacked by a dog.  Your lawyer will provide advice on the steps you need to take to ensure you are properly compensated for the damages you have suffered as a result of the dog attack.

By | 2021-11-09T00:22:13+00:00 October 15th, 2021|Blog, claims, Personal Injury|0 Comments

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