What Are the Most Common Injuries You Could Suffer From a Dog Bite?
Approximately 4.5 million Americans are bitten by dogs every year. Children are at the highest risk of being bitten and are more likely to require medical treatment for their injuries than adults. When a person is bitten by a dog, he can suffer serious injuries that sometimes result in long-term complications, permanent scarring, and disability. However, with the help of an experienced dog bite attorney, a victim of one of these attacks can hold the dog owner responsible for compensating him for his injuries.
Common Injuries That You Could Suffer as a Result of a Dog Attack
Dangerous dog bites can be caused by both small and large dogs. The severity of the injuries will depend on a number of factors, including the location of the bite, the strength of the dog, and the duration of the attack. While a dog attack can cause many different types of injuries, some of the more common ones include:
Traumatic brain injury. A dog may knock a person to the ground, causing a blow to the head. This can cause traumatic brain injury (TBI) or other brain damage. TBI can cause permanent changes to a person’s reasoning, memory, and emotions that can result in permanent disability and limitations in the ability to take care of basic daily needs. In addition, it can damage a person’s hearing, vision, and mobility.
Broken bones and crushing injuries. A dog’s powerful jaws can clamp over an arm or leg, causing them to be broken or crushed, sometimes in multiple places. A victim could need surgery and months of recovery from his injuries.
Scars. Dog bites can cause permanent scars and disfigurement—often on the victim’s face or other visible body parts. He could need painful skin grafts and other reconstructive surgery to reduce the damage. In addition, this type of injury can cause emotional trauma and reduce the person’s quality of life.
Infection. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), almost one in five dog bites will become infected. Some of them can be life-threatening. If there are any signs of infection, such as heat, redness, swelling, or pus, a dog bite victim should seek immediate medical care.
Amputations. A dog’s jaws are powerful enough to tear a person’s limb from their body during the attack. In addition, some bones, tendons, and muscles can be damaged so much by the dog bite that a person’s toe, foot, leg, hand, finger, or arm may need to be amputated.
Emotional trauma. In some cases, the emotional trauma from the terror of the dog attack and the resulting injuries can be as serious as the physical injuries, especially when the victim is a child. Nightmares, fear of going outside, fear of dogs, and other anxieties are a few of the symptoms of emotional trauma and post-traumatic stress that can be caused by a dog attack.
Death. Dog bites can cause excessive bleeding, internal organ damage, infections, and other catastrophic injuries that can result in a person’s death. This can be even more devastating when the victim is a child.
Were you or a loved one injured in a dog attack? Call our office today to schedule a free consultation to learn about your rights under Washington’s dog bite laws.