Dogs are popular pets for good reason. They're loyal. They can be trained to perform special duties, like assisting the blind or disabled. They are affectionate and friendly, when raised and handled properly. Sometimes, however, due to neurological issues or a history of abuse, dogs become violent toward humans. When that happens, the potential injuries to the victim can be devastating.
Even small dogs have the potential to cause serious injuries. Bigger dogs, as well as bully breeds with powerful jaws and hunting dogs, can pose a serious threat to humans. In some cases, a dog attack can prove fatal. Other times, dog attacks cause physical and mental fallout that can last for many years. Make sure you seek medical treatment after a dog bite attack and file a report about the incident, if necessary.
Children injured by dogs may require years of help
Small child who get bit by a dog, particularly in the face, could need extensive plastic surgery. Unlike with adults, who can have damage repaired and move on with their lives, children will likely require multiple surgeries to repair their faces as they grow and mature. The expense involved can prove to be astronomical.
There's also the psychological impact of a dog attack on a young child. The young victim could develop a fear of all dogs. A child who suffers a dog bite in the park may become afraid of open spaces or playing outside. The expense of therapy, as well as the expense of medical trauma care, can continue accruing for many years.
Facial and hand injuries may require surgery
Most people understand that dog bites to the face or neck could require plastic surgery. Many victims of dog bite attacks may end up getting bitten on their hands when they attempt to defend themselves. Your hands are intricate, with many muscles, tendons and small bones.
Repairing the damage to the hands can require multiple expensive surgeries, followed by physical therapy. No one should dismiss dog bites to the hands or even the feet as a minor issue. These attacks can result in reduced function and strength, impacting everything from quality of life to dexterity and the ability to work.
Dog bite cases can involve criminal responsibility or insurance
Many times, depending on the situation, a dog bite attack could be the responsibility of the dog's owner. If the dog has a history of violent of aggressive behavior and attacks and injures a person, the owner could be found guilty of a crime. Additionally, if the dog was running loose in a public area, the owner is likely liable under Texas law.
In cases with injuries in a dog owner's home or on their property, homeowner's insurance may cover the medical expenses incurred by the victim. Exceptions exist, including homeowners whose policies do not cover certain breeds. In a situation where a policy excludes a breed and the owner has one anyway, the owner may be the one financially responsible for the victim's medical costs.