In many instances, dogs are considered man’s best friend. They often remain kind and unwavering in their loyalty to their owner. However, these sweet and often goofy pets are still animals, which means they can snap in an instant. As such, dog attacks can occur. If you are a victim, knowing how to proceed in these instances is vital to recovering the compensation you are entitled to. This blog explores what you must do if you’re the victim of a dog attack in Maryland and how a Prince George’s County dog bite lawyer can assist you in these challenging times.
What Should I Do After a Dog Attack?
Immediately following a dog attack, knowing how to proceed is vital. If you need immediate treatment at a medical facility, do not hesitate to contact emergency services. However, if you do not require immediate treatment, you must obtain the dog and owner’s information. This allows you to know how to get in contact with the owner if you wish to pursue legal action.
Once you get the owner’s information, it’s critical to understand that you must seek medical care for the wounds you’ve endured as soon as possible. Unfortunately, your injuries must be cleaned and treated as soon as possible, as infections can occur if not properly cared for. Also, you may need to obtain a rabies vaccination if the dog that attacked you was not up-to-date on their shots.
Who Can Face Liability in Maryland?
In Maryland, there is strict liability for dog owners. As such, if a dog attacks another person, their owner is liable regardless of whether or not they knew their dog was violent or aggressive. This is because the law states that dog owners must assume their dog is vicious.
Additionally, even if owners took the necessary steps to prevent an injury from occurring, but their dog still attacks someone, they will face responsibility for the damages inflicted.
Generally, the only exception to this is if the victim was trespassing, attacking the dog’s owner, or abusing or provoking the dog. This is because Maryland is a contributory negligence state, which means any liability you have contributing to the accident bars you from collecting compensation.
What Damages Can I Recover?
If you are injured by a violent dog, it’s vital to understand the compensation you are able to recover. Most generally, this includes economic damages like the costs of medical bills, wages lost due to inability to work, and rehabilitation expenses. Additionally, you can pursue non-economic damages, which, in the case of a dog attack, would likely center around pain and suffering, disfigurement or scarring, and mental anguish.
When hurt by a dog, McCarthy, Winkelman, Mester & Offutt can assist. Our dedicated team understands the complexities that can arise due to these unfortunate injuries. We will do everything possible to assist you during these challenging times to fight for the compensation you deserve. Contact our firm today to learn how we can help you navigate these troubling circumstances.