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WHEN DOGS (OR THEIR OWNERS) BITE

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A recent and strange incident at a California park involving two people and a dog made national news when what began as a potential dog attack ended with injuries caused by a human bite. It was reported that a jogger pepper sprayed a dog that was allegedly attacking her and in response, the dog's owner bit the jogger on her arm causing a serious wound. Not surprisingly, the woman is facing felony charges for attacking the jogger who was reportedly just trying to save herself from a dog attack. While this human bite may have caused serious injuries, our San Diego dog bite attorneys know that dog bite injuries are usually more severe and sometimes fatal. 

Dog bites and attacks are a serious problem here in San Diego and throughout the rest of the state of California. According to the United States Postal Service, 46 San Diego letter carriers were attacked by dogs in 2017 and only four cities in the country had a higher number of letter carrier dog attacks. Another alarming statistic comes from a recent 13-year study conducted by dogsbite.org showing that the state of California ranks second in the country for the number of fatal dog attacks between 2005 and 2017.

BREED SPECIFIC STATISTICS

While breed-specific legislation has been a hot and controversial topic in California, it is a fact that certain breeds of dogs are involved in more fatal dog attacks than others. The above-mentioned 13-year study reported the following statistics related to breeds and fatal attacks:

  • Pit bulls were involved in 65% of dog attack fatalities resulting in 284 deaths.
  • Rottweilers followed by being involved in 10% of the fatalities causing 45 deaths.
  • German Shepherds came in next at 4.6% causing 20 deaths.
  • Mixed breeds were involved in 17 deaths.
  • American Bulldogs ranked number 5 at 3.5% causing 15 deaths.
  • Mastiffs and Bullmastiffs followed closely at 3.2% causing 14 deaths.
  • Huskies were involved in 3% of the fatalities causing 13 deaths.

DOG BITE INJURIES

Even when dog bites are not fatal, injuries can be extremely severe and require expensive medical treatments. Dog bite injuries can include lacerations, torn muscles and tendons, scarring and disfigurement, diseases, and infections. Dog bite victims may have to go through long term treatments such as rehabilitation and multiple surgeries in order to recover from their injuries.

CALIFORNIA DOG BITE LAW

Fortunately for California dog bite victims, as mentioned above, California laws favor dog bite victims and generally hold dog owners responsible for all of the injuries and damages sustained by dog bite victims. In rare cases, sometimes when a victim provokes a dog or is a trespasser, the dog owner may escape liability for injuries and damages suffered.

If you or a loved one has sustained injuries caused by a dog bite or attack, contact a San Diego dog bite attorney at Hiden, Rott & Oertle LLP to schedule a consultation. Our attorneys will work to see that you are fully compensated for your injuries and damages.

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Phone: 619-369-3323
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