Kirkland Dog Bite Attorney
Dogs are man’s best friend – right? So why do they bite us?
According to the American Kennel Club, all dogs are capable of biting humans under certain circumstances. Most dogs exhibit some type of warning before they actually attack. But often people don’t interpret a dog’s warnings as the precursor to a bite. When dogs bite it is usually for one of the following reasons.
- Afraid – the dog finds something threatening about the person near or coming near them
- Surprised – the dog is startled and reacts spontaneously
- Protective – the dog is territorial and is defending home turf
- Pain – the dog is sick or injured
- Provocation – the dog is teased or encouraged – can happen with rough play
The Kirkland dog bite attorney at Law Offices of Joseph Rome knows that irresponsible owners are often the reason that dog bites happen. We believe in promoting responsible dog ownership by holding owners accountable when their dogs bite.
Dog Bite Law in Washington – Who is Responsible?
The law in Washington makes a dog owner responsible for the injuries caused when their dog bites someone who is legally on public or private property unless the person bitten has provoked the dog’s behavior.
Persons other than the owner who have taken on some responsibility for the dog can be liable if they either:
- knew or should have known the dog might injure someone
- didn’t know the dog might injure someone but failed to take reasonable measures to contain or control the dog
Dog Bite Statistics
Americans love dogs. About 1/3 of the homes in the US have a canine family member. Dog bites are actually quite common. Approximately 2,400 dog attacks occur every day. About 38% of the attacks result in injuries severe enough to require hospital treatment.
The following are also true about dog bites in the US:
- The majority of dog bite victims are children.
- Children ages 5-9 are most likely to be bitten by dogs.
- Most biting dogs belong to the victim’s family or a friend.
- 80% of dog bites happen at home.
- 46 dog bite-related fatalities occurred in the US in 2020 – 13 were children aged 2 or under.
What to Do After a Dog Bite
The biggest concern after a dog bite is preventing infection. About 50% of dog bites transfer bacteria. It is important to clean the wound thoroughly, apply an antibacterial and cover the wound.
You want to see a doctor and have the wound evaluated as soon as possible to determine if further treatment is necessary.
How to Minimize the Risk of a Dog Bite
Minimizing the chances of being bitten by a dog involves awareness and common sense. Pay attention to the dog’s behavior. If a dog is unfamiliar to you don’t approach it. If a dog exhibits signs of discomfort or fear stay back. Growling is a pretty clear signal that a dog feels threatened. If a dog is getting too aggressive in play, slow things down so the dog can calm down.
How We Can Help
People who keep dogs have a responsibility to make sure their dogs do not attack other people who are behaving lawfully. When dog keepers fail and dogs bite, those injured can look to the person responsible for the dog to recover for their damages.
At the Law Offices of Joseph Rome, we hate it when dogs bite. But we know who is really responsible. Our Kirkland dog bite lawyer gets clients compensation for dog bite injuries. In King County, contact us here or call our office at 425-429-1729 to schedule a free consultation.