What to Do When a Dog Bites a Child in California

Dog Bites

After a dog bite, your child’s health and safety are the only things that matter. Getting medical treatment is always the No. 1 priority. But what happens next? Can you pursue compensation for a dog bite in California?

At Silverthorne Attorneys, we understand how devastating a dog bite can be. Not only can children sustain catastrophic injuries, but they can also suffer lasting emotional trauma after an animal attack. Let a dog bite lawyer from our firm help you seek compensation for your losses while you focus on helping your child heal, both physically and emotionally.

The road to justice begins with a free consultation. There’s no obligation. If you choose us to represent you, there are also no upfront or out-of-pocket fees. In fact, we only get paid if we win compensation for you. Call or reach out to us online today to get started.

First Steps When a Dog Bites Your Child

There’s nothing that can prepare you for the shock of a dog attack, especially if your child is involved. The stress of the situation can make it difficult to know what to do immediately after a dog bite. Follow these tips:

  • Call 911 – You should immediately call 911 to summon emergency medical services. Doing so will also alert them if a dangerous dog is on the loose.
  • Seek medical attention – Even if the bite does not seem serious, dogs often carry diseases or bacteria that could infect even the smallest puncture wounds. Seeing a doctor can help prevent more serious complications from arising.
  • Identify the dog owner – It’s important to identify the owner, if possible, so that you can ask questions about the dog’s history. Dog bites are typically covered through an owner’s homeowner’s policy, so you’ll want to get that information from them.
  • Determine whether the dog’s shots are up to date – It’s important to know if the dog is protected from certain diseases, especially rabies. Don’t take the owner’s word for it. Ask them for a copy of the dog’s medical records and the name of their vet.
  • Document your child’s injuries – Take photos or videos of the injury(s) and where the dog bite occurred. It’s important to record the setting, such as if the dog was off leash or on public property. Also, hold on to the clothes and shoes worn at the time of the attack.
  • Report the incident to animal control – Your local animal control services need to know about the incident. They keep a record of dangerous animals. Reporting the bite could prevent other attacks.
  • Contact a California dog bite lawyer – Your child has rights. An attorney can explain them and begin investigating the claim right away.

How Is Compensation Determined for a Dog Bite Injury?

Several factors affect the value of a dog bite injury claim. Compensation may be determined by:

  • The nature of the injuries and the medical care your child needs
  • The emotional and psychological effects of the attack
  • The extent of the therapy and rehabilitation your child may need to recover
  • A child’s pain and suffering
  • Loss of future earnings and earning capacity
  • The out-of-pocket expenses that result from the incident (e.g., the cost of travel to-and-from doctor’s appointments)

When a dog bites a child, it can lead to significant long-term physical, mental, and emotional harm. A complicated injury, such as one where a child is permanently scarred or disfigured, can be even more challenging to treat and understand. You’ll want maximum compensation to provide financial security for the future medical and psychological treatments that may be necessary.

Should You Get a Lawyer for a Dog Bite?

Getting a dog bite lawyer in CA is a wise idea. A dog bite attorney handles cases involving serious injuries every day. They will know how California dog bite laws apply to your case and negotiate for full and fair compensation to account for your child’s losses. They will also be able to collect the evidence needed to build a convincing claim.

Talk With a Dog Bite Lawyer in CA Today

At Silverthorne Attorneys, we’re committed to protecting your child’s rights and wellbeing after a dog attack. In addition to providing top-quality legal advice, we can connect you with the right medical professionals so that your child gets the best treatment possible during this difficult time. Call or contact us today for a free case review.