Although dogs are often considered man’s best friend, they can also cause great harm, often unintentionally.
Who is at risk of being involved in a NYC Dog Bite Attack?
While people of all ages may fall victim to a dog bite accident, children have the highest risk. In New York, over 6,000 children under 20 are treated at the hospital each year due to dog bites and attacks. In fact, children of this age range comprise of 79% of all fatal attacks. For more information, read the full study.
Preventing Dog Bites
Under most circumstances, dog bites are preventable. Often dogs will bite out of fear or a desire to protect their owner or home. Children are most commonly involved in dog bite accidents because they’re often unaware of how to safely interact with dogs, which may spark defensive reactions on the part of the dog. However, parental supervision and instruction on safe ways to approach dogs can be extremely helpful in preventing dog bites. Here are some general safety tips to keep in mind when interacting with someone else’s dog:
- Don’t creep up or approach them too suddenly
- Before petting a dog, ask the owner if it is safe to do so. If yes, approach the dog gently
- Don’t tease, poke, or physically provoke a dog
- Don’t pet a dog that is within a car or behind a fence
- Regardless of how well behaved a dog may seem, don’t leave your child alone with him
- Don’t approach a dog while he’s eating or playing with a toy
- Don’t allow your child to touch a dog’s food bowl
As a dog owner, there are certain measures you may take to protect the safety and well-being of others, as well as your dog. These precautions include:
- Train your dog to obey commands such as ‘sit’ and ‘no’
- Make sure your dog’s leash is no longer than 6 feet
- Don’t leave your dog unattended
- Sense if your dog seems to be in an agitated or anxious mood. If he is, avoid letting strangers interact with him
- Expose your dog to many different people early on so he feel at ease in social settings
- Monitor the manner in which other adults and children are interacting with your dog
- Keep your dog vaccinated against rabies
New York Dog Bite Laws
New York State has a ‘one-bite rule.’ The one-bite rule states that upon a dog’s first biting incident, the owner is not held liable as long as they didn’t have reason to believe their dog was likely to engage in such behavior. Indicators that an owner must take into consideration in assessing the likelihood of their dog behaving with aggression include:
- Previous or attempted bites
- Complaints about the dog’s aggression made by others
- Fights with other dogs
- Growling and barking at people
- Jumping on people
If the dog in question has a history of any of the aforementioned behaviors, it is unlikely that the one-bite rule will apply. A judge will likely find the owner liable for the dog-bite.
What to do if you have been involved in a NYC dog bite accident?
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries due to a dog bite attack, contact a personal injury attorney today. According to a study conducted by The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the average cost of a dog-bite related hospital stay is $18,200. You deserve financial compensation for your medical expenses. Over the years, the Attorneys of Banville Law have helped numerous victims secure settlements for their injuries.