What to do After a Dog Bite
Dogs are among the most popular pets in the United States. In fact, there are currently around 74.8 million dogs living throughout our country. Unfortunately, not every dog owner has the level of responsibility needed to care for these pets. If a dog is not properly trained to be around people, or if it is allowed to roam the neighborhood unsupervised, it can pose a threat to everyone in the neighborhood.
So what should you do if you are one of the 4.7 million Americans bitten by a dog every year? There are two basic issues to keep in mind: your health and your rights.
As soon as a dog bites you or someone else, be sure to take the following steps:
- Apply pressure to the wound with clean material
- Wash the injured area gently with antibacterial soap and water
- Keep the injury elevated above the heart to slow bleeding/swelling
- Cover the injury with a sterile bandage
- Clean the wound regularly until it is fully healed
Contact a doctor right away in any of these circumstances:
- The wound continues to bleed for 15 minutes or longer
- There are signs of infection, such as fever, excess swelling, or redness
- You do not know if the dog has been immunized
Once your health has been taken care of, your next concern will probably be making sure this kind of incident does not happen again. The only way to do this is to hold the negligent pet owner legally responsible for his or her actions. Sadly, many negligent owners are not seriously concerned about the damage their pets may do until it begins to affect them legally or financially.
A qualified Charleston dog bite lawyer can help you win compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. More importantly, you will be able to send a message to the community that poorly trained or supervised dogs are not acceptable.
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