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Animal Injuries

Animal Attack Overview

Owning a pet is a common household joy for many Americans. Having a family dog or other large pet has become increasingly popular. However, when people become animal owners, they automatically inherit responsibility for the actions and behaviors of their pets, whether they know it or not. California law makes all pet owners responsible for the actions of their animals. Specifically, California law makes dog owners strictly liable for injuries caused by their dog. This means that if you or someone you love has been bitten by a dog, the owner of the dog may be held responsible for any damages, particularly if their dog was not restrained by a leash or kept in an enclosed area.

Animal injuries are particularly horrible when children are involved. Some animal injuries, for example, can cause disfigurement or permanent scarring. These effects can last a lifetime and may damage a victim both physically and mentally. Other injuries from animal attacks include:

  • Damage to a victim’s face, head, upper torso, legs, or arms
  • Brain injuries
  • Head trauma
  • Disfigurement
  • Nerve damage
  • Broken bones

What to do After an Animal Attack

After people have been injured by an animal, they should seek immediate medical treatment. Even if the injury seems minor, some animals (e.g., dogs and cats) may carry deadly viruses like rabies. Once a person has been examined by a doctor, they should then think about discussing their legal rights and options with an experienced attorney at Goodwin Law Corporation. This is especially true if the victim has accumulated medical bills or experienced a traumatic attack.

In cases of animals who do not have a history of aggressive behavior or prior attacks, a victim’s legal recourse may be limited. In California, animal owners may avoid liability if their pet has no previous history of attacking people. A victim’s legal recourse may also be limited if too much time has lapsed and the injured occurred outside the Statute of Limitations. In either situation, it is important to seek an experienced attorney to determine what remedies you or your loved one may have after an animal attack.

Why Hire an Attorney?

Goodwin Law Corporation has represented many clients who have been victims of animal attacks ranging from dog bites to being kicked by a horse. A pet owner’s homeowner’s insurance may cover cases such as animal attacks, or compensation may be sought through other means. By reviewing all potential resources and asserting your rights throughout all legal proceedings, an experienced attorney can effectively maximize your financial recovery. Damages from animal attacks may include:

  • Medical expenses
  • Future medical Care
  • Loss of wages
  • Future lost earnings
  • Emotional distress
  • Pain and suffering