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Carmichael Dog Bite Lawyer


Thousands of California residents have to go to the hospital due to serious dog bite injuries. According to CBS News, dog bites that required an emergency room visit skyrocketed up forty-four percent in California between 2005 and 2015. The Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development in California shows a shocking jump in reported dog bites in those ten years for adults. Fortunately, the data showed no appreciable increase in dog bites involving children.

A prime example of the seriousness of dog attacks can be found in the attack of a 62-year-old man in Sacramento. He was riding his bicycle when he was attacked by a pit bull along the American River Parkway near Cal Expo, according to Fox40.com. The man did nothing to provoke the dog, and he was simply riding his bicycle when the dog lunged at him, forcing him to the ground and inflicting serious bodily harm. Unfortunately, this scenario is quite common in California.

Dangerous Dog Breeds

As you will learn, many dog owners try to escape liability by claiming they had no idea their dog would attack another person. They may try to point out that the dog has never bitten someone. However, such a defense is relatively weak when the dog is a breed with a known propensity for violence. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the following dog breeds are known to be a bite risk:

  • Pitbulls
  • Rottweilers
  • Huskies
  • German Shepherds
  • Malamutes
  • Doberman Pinschers
  • Chows
Understanding California Dog Bite Laws

If you or a loved one suffered a Carmichael dog bite injury, you might be entitled to financial restitution from the dog owner. Under California law, a dog owner is fully liable (a.k.a. strictly responsible) when their dog bites another person. It does not matter if the dog has a history of vicious or violent behavior, and the owner remains liable.

However, it is essential to understand that strict liability only applies to the dog’s owner. This means that if someone is simply walking a dog as a favor to a friend or is a professional dog walker, they will not be liable unless they specifically did something to initiate the attack. Even then, liability would still extend to the dog owner. Also, strict liability only applies to an injury where you or a loved one was bitten by a dog. This means if a dog lunges at you but does not actually bite you and you fall down, suffering a low back or neck injury, the strict liability statute does not apply.

Another potential exception is that the strict liability statute only applies if you were bitten by a dog in a lawfully private or public space. This means that if you or a loved one was trespassing on the dog owner’s property, there is a chance the strict liability statute may not apply. In addition, a dog owner could avoid liability if there is evidence that you or a loved one willfully accepted the risk of a dog bite. A typical example is the case of an employee at a kennel or veterinarian’s office. An employee bitten by a dog under their direct care is considered to have willfully assumed the risk of a potential dog bite and would likely be unsuccessful in pursuing financial restitution through the dog bite strict liability statute.

Damages Associated with Dog Bites

When someone is attacked by a dog, they often suffer physical and emotional trauma. In terms of physical harm, the damages might include:

  • Physical scarring that requires multiple surgeries, including plastic surgery, to correct
  • Lost limbs
  • Damage to nerves and ligaments
  • Bone fractures and sprains
  • Potential development of an infection

The following video provides tips on how to treat an animal bite.

In addition to the physical trauma of a dog bite, many victims also suffer emotional trauma, mental anguish, anxiety, and stress from the incident. There have been reported cases of victims developing post-traumatic stress disorder and phobias related to dogs due to an attack.

These harms and losses are potentially recoverable through a dog bite personal injury claim. The only way to know whether you have a claim is to sit down and speak with an experienced dog bite injury attorney.

Be Cognizant of Statutory Window for Filing your Claim

If you or a loved one was bitten by a dog, do not procrastinate and put off speaking to an injury lawyer. You only have two years from the date of the attack to file a lawsuit under California’s statute of limitations. It is critically important that you speak to an attorney soon after the attack. If you allow the two-year period to pass, you will be unable to file a lawsuit and likely lose your ability to hold the dog owner accountable for your harm and losses. The sooner you speak to an attorney, the sooner they can review your claim and put together a compelling case.

Talk to an Experienced Dog Bite Lawyer

Getting bitten by a dog can be both physically and emotionally traumatizing. You might have permanent scars, nerve damage, and other injuries that never fully heal. You might also develop anxiety and fear even being around a dog. This is why you must let an experienced Carmichael dog bite attorney help you through the injury claims process.

Carmichael Dog Bite FAQ

What should I do if I have been bitten by a dog?

If you have been bitten by a dog and sustained injuries, you should locate the dog’s owner, and anyone who may have been responsible for the dog’s care at the time of the incident. You should also seek medical attention immediately, as dog bites can become infected and lead to severe medical issues.

Why do I need a dog bite lawyer to handle my case?

You will need an attorney for many reasons if you have been bitten by a dog. Your lawyer can ensure all your losses are accounted for in your recovery for damages. You want the other party to understand that you are serious about protecting your legal rights. An experienced dog bite lawyer can help you make sound decisions as you move through the claim process and ensure you get the maximum compensation for your injuries.

Dog Bite Lawyers in Carmichael, CA

If you or a family member has suffered a dog bite, please give our experienced Carmichael dog bite lawyers a call for free, friendly advice. We can be reached at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400.

We’ve been helping Carmichael residents recover compensation for their injuries since 1982.

See our past cases on our Verdicts and Settlements page.

Editor’s Note: updated [cha 7.19.23] Photo by Depositphotos.com sb bw [cs 1172]