Dogs are generally friendly and fun animals. Children almost instinctively reach out to dogs as they pass. Many adults will smile when they see a dog approach them on the sidewalk.
However, there are others who will recoil in terror from even the smallest or friendliest-looking canine companions, often because they have personally experienced or witnessed a vicious dog bite attack. When dogs become aggressive, the people involved in the situation could suffer catastrophic physical injuries.
What happens after a dog becomes aggressive and injures a person unprovoked?
An injury claim may soon follow
Some dog bite attacks only result in minor scratches, but any physical trauma caused by a dog may warrant medical attention. Even a single puncture wound from a dog bite could cause a severe infection. More damaging bites could lead to disfiguring scars, cause nerve damage or even lead to severe blood loss. When large dogs attack suddenly or when the person bitten is quite young or medically vulnerable, there is also a risk of the attack proving fatal.
Medical expenses, lost wages and even property damage costs add up very quickly after a dog attacks a human and can lead to thousands of dollars in losses. The person attacked or the parent of a minor bitten by an aggressive dog may need to pursue a personal injury claim to recoup some of those losses. Such claims typically result in an insurance payout.
Homeowner’s insurance often covers dog bite attacks, provided that the company was aware of an animal’s presence. Dog bite claims are quite common, with Illinois being one of the states that have the highest number of reported dog bite incidents annually. Indiana may not see quite as many, but they are still a concern for individuals across the state.
Someone who has been hurt by an aggressive animal – and who did not provoke the animal intentionally or break the law immediately prior to the incident – may have the right to seek compensation in court either through insurance or directly from the animal’s owner. Knowing about those rights may help those who have been hurt by an aggressive animal assert themselves after an incident left them injured and possibly traumatized.