Thousands of people across the United States go to the emergency room each year because of a dog bite. Unfortunately, some of these injuries are even fatalities, especially in children. Although many people in California own a friendly family dog, it is not always possible to control a dog’s actions. There are even some owners who specifically encourage aggression in their dogs. Dog attacks often cause scars, disfigurement, nerve damage and other injuries. Infection is often a major issue with dog bite victims as well.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that one in five dog bites cause infection in a person because of bacteria in the dog’s mouth. The most common infections a victim can suffer from include:
- Rabies. Rabies is a life-threatening virus that can attack a person’s brain. If a victim does not receive rabies shots after being bit by an animal, they can die.
- Tetanus. Although most people think tetanus is caused by stepping on rusty nails, a person can also get tetanus from a dog bite.
- Staph infections. Staph infections can be resistant to antibiotics and difficult to treat. They can lead to lung, skin and urinary tract infections as well.
- Pasteurella. Pasteurella is a bacterial infection that causes a red swelling mark at the bite location. Those who have weakened immune systems can suffer more serious complications.
If a person suffered a dog bite it is important that they contact an attorney as soon as possible. Dog bite victims should consider getting advice from an attorney before accepting compensation from the dog’s owners or taking any steps to dismiss fault.