Dog bites are a major public health problem in the United States, actually exceeding the total number of cases of mumps, cough, and measles every year. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 4.5 million dog bites occur in the country each year, and almost 756,000 of these individuals need medical attention.
Dog bites do not only cause victims to sustain minor cuts and infections, but also serious and permanent injuries that can even result in death. Our knowledgeable and experienced dog bite attorneys are familiar with the traumatic and damaging effects that one dog bite injury can have on a victim and the victim’s family. If you or a loved one are bitten or attacked by a dog, call a dog bite attorney from The Grossman Law Firm as soon as possible.
When a dog attacks or bites an individual, the bacteria from dog’s mouth transfers to the victim’s blood stream. Unfortunately, even the most minor of dog bites can place the victim at risk of incurring blood poisoning. Also called bacteremia, this condition can cause organ failure, and can even result in death.
When a dog bite victim is bitten in the arm or leg, it is possible for the victim to sustain serious muscle damage, thus affecting his or her ability to move and walk. The victim may suffer from immobility and chronic pain, and may need several years of medical treatment.
Dogs can bite victims hard and deep, and with their thick, strong, and powerful jaws, they can damage the nerves found in a person’s face, neck, arms, and legs. A victim suffering nerve damage may experience numbness, pain, and a loss of sensation. Unfortunately, nerve damage can be significant and even permanent, and can oftentimes result in chronic pain and immobility that requires years of extensive medical treatment and surgery.
Dog bite victims with scars are left with a permanent reminder of a traumatic experience.
Unfortunately, even with the best medical care, certain scars cannot be erased or removed. Some victims even develop keloids, which are the excessive growth of scar tissue in the area of a healed skin injury. Victims are left to deal with the shame and embarrassment of visible scars on their face, arms, or legs for the rest of their lives. Victims who sustain scars from dog bites or attacks should seek legal representation immediately.
Tetanus is a condition commonly transmitted through dog bites and attacks. This disease causes headaches, muscle spasms, and also pain and swelling at the site of the wound. Victims suffering from tetanus must receive a tetanus shot to kill the bacterium. If untreated, this condition could result in amputation, or even death.
At times, cuts and wounds that are caused by dog bites and attacks can result to the loss of tissue. This tissue loss can cause deformity to the injured area. If a dog bite victim has severely damaged tissue, then this tissue must be cut away, and skin grafting will likely be needed. In certain instances, a plastic surgeon may need to move other tissue into the injured area in order to close or recreate the disfigured area. Such reconstruction may consist of numerous operations over a number of years.
Most dogs have very strong jaws, and these jaws can literally crush a person’s bones in the arm or hand. Unfortunately, a number of dog bite scenarios can result in broken bones and fractures, including a broken hand, wrist, or arm; a broken foot, ankle, or leg; hip fractures, skull fractures, a broken nose, and broken ribs. Broken bones sustained from dog bites are quite common, and these injuries can seriously impact an individual’s quality of life.
Infections are among the most common problems following a dog bite. A dog’s saliva is anything but clean, and studies show that bacteria and other pathogens appear in approximately 85% of all bites. Even the smallest of infections from dog bites can quickly grow and result in unexpected complications. If left untreated, infections can spread into the bloodstream or into deeper structures.
A victim sustains puncture wounds when a dog’s claws or fangs pierce his or her skin. Although the wound may not bleed profusely, infections can quickly set in if left untreated. Depending on how deep the wound is, puncture wounds may result in permanent scarring and nerve damage.