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The best ways to protect yourself from dog bites

On Behalf of | Feb 25, 2020 | Firm News

Unexpected personal injuries happen every day in Pennsylvania through a variety of mechanisms. When you suffer pain, lost income from missed work and medical bills for an injury that was someone else’s fault it may be prudent to file a lawsuit. One common cause of injury in the U.S. is a dog bite. Children are much more likely to be hurt from a dog bite than adults and these bites more frequently require medical attention. 

Information on the WebMD site states that dogs bite about 4.7 million people each year. In many cases, these are known animals, such as the family pet or a neighbor’s dog. When you or a family member receives a dog bite it is best to seek medical attention to prevent infection and to treat the wound.  The following strategies are often helpful in avoiding dog bites altogether: 

  • Avoid stray dogs 
  • Approach any dog slowly, or allow the dog to come to you 
  • Never run away from a dog or scream, but back away slowly while avoiding eye contact 
  • Monitor your children in the company of dogs 

An article in Business Insurance reports that Pennsylvania is among the top three states for insurance claims from dog bites. Nationwide, claims for dog bites or other dog-related injuries increased 2.2.% from 2016 to 2017. There were 18, 522 such claims paid out in 2017. The Insurance Information Institute and State Farm Insurance found that the average claim amounted to just over $37,000, an increase of 11.5% from the previous year. The increase in claims costs are driven by higher medical costs and the size of settlements awarded to plaintiffs in lawsuits.