Around 1,000 U.S. citizens need emergency treatment for severe dog bite injuries each day. Every year, about 9,500 people are hospitalized because of dog bites. While many dogs aren’t particularly large, these smaller dogs can also be dangerous to children. Likewise, part of the danger in a dog bite lies in bacterial growth, which can cause serious problems if left untreated. If you’ve been attacked by a dog, you may be able to seek compensation depending on the circumstances of the incident.
In Georgia, the law presumes most dogs are harmless. With proper ownership, this is entirely accurate. However, not all dog owners are responsible with their animals, and a mistreated dog is likely to take its aggression and frustration out on other animals and people. Because the law makes this presumption, it is your job to prove the owner of the dog knows of its tendency toward aggression.
If the dog was not at heel or on a leash at the time of the attack, you must provide evidence that shows the dog was clearly dangerous and that the owner knew, or should have known, about this aggression. For example, if you can get another person who was attacked by the dog to testify about their experience, this could be sufficient evidence to prove the dog owners liability in your accident.
However, if you were attacked by what Georgia considers a dangerous dog, this situation would be regarded as a different matter entirely. The state’s Dangerous Dog Control Law regulates the registration of dangerous dogs, proper enclosures, insurance policies, and other requirements and penalties for dogs considered to be “dangerous.” According to the law, any dog is seen as dangerous if it inflicts a serious injury on a human being without provocation on public or private property. Likewise, if a dog attacks another person after being labeled a dangerous dog, the owner will be held solely responsible for any injury to a person caused by their dog.
It is, therefore, important to distinguish between dogs who have never attacked before and dogs who have. You can pursue a claim for compensation more easily if the dog is already considered a dangerous animal, but you will have a harder time doing so for a first-time offender.
If you need help with your case, consider calling our skilled Atlanta personal injury attorneys at Pratt Clay, LLC. Our lawyers can offer you top-quality service and excellent legal advice regarding the strength of your case. We have been able to recover more than $70 million on behalf of our clients; let us see what we can do for you.