This time of the year is a great time to be out and about in the Elm City and you’ll notice that there are a lot of dogs and dog owners walking our streets in October as well. The steamy heat of the summer has subsided and the winter weather is not yet upon us, so it makes a perfect opportunity to get out and get some exercise with your dog. It also leaves many vulnerable to coming in contact with an animal and experiencing a New Haven dog bite injury.
If you experience a dog bite injury it can be mild and feel like just a scratch or you can experience something that is a little bit more severe and causes you to seek medical attention. In almost all cases, when you come in contact with a strange dog and are injured as a result of it, no matter how severe or minor the injury is you should seek medical attention so you can assure yourself that the injury will heal without any complications.
When you’re walking through the streets of New Haven you will likely encounter dogs of all sizes and personalities. When a dog is on its leash and the owner appears to have a handle on keeping the dog in check it is not something that should be of too much concern, but when a dog is acting wild and the owner can not manage the dog’s behavior, this is a situation where you should avoid any interactions with the K9 at all. If this is not possible, you should limit your exposure to the animal and get on your way before you get into any seriously dangerous situations.
If you do get injured when you’re interacting with a dog, whether it is on a leash or not, some of the factors that can determine the severity of the injury include, but are not limited to the following;
1.) The size of the dog. While all dogs can cause serious injuries for humans, the size of the dog you encounter could lead to more harm. For instance, if you engage with a 15 lbs. dog, that dog could most certainly bite you and even break your skin, but it is not likely that it would create a situation where you would need to seek significant medical attention. However, if you’re interacting with a 100 lbs. dog the injury you may experience could be far more significant and require a level of medical care that you might not have expected when you initially interacted with the dog.
2.) Similarly to the size of the dog, the force of the dog’s bite may have a significant impact on the severity of the injury that you experience. A large dog can exert a force of nearly 200 lbs. per square inch. A bite with this much force could lead to serious issues like deep lacerations and even broken bones. While the force with which a dog bites is not entirely determined by the dog’s size, it is a factor and should be noted when you are deciding whether you should interact with a dog or not.
3.) The state of the dog’s mouth. Let us explain. If you notice that a dog looks to be drooling all over the place and her/his mouth is unkempt, you may want to avoid interacting with the dog all together. A dog’s mouth can be loaded with bacteria and if you come in contact with the bacteria it could lead to severe medical issues for you. Even a small dog bite, that comes from an animal that has bacteria throughout her/his mouth could require you to seek medical attention and could have long term ramifications on your health and well-being.
If you are walking through the city and you come across a dog that you do not and an owner who you are unfamiliar with you should continue walking and not interact with the dog. You can be friendly and admire the dog from a distance, but interacting with the dog who is not familiar with you could put you in a situation where you find yourself experiencing a New Haven dog bite injury that could lead you to experience long-term medical issues.
Dog bite injuries can get quite complex and you may need someone to represent you who has experience with the type of injury that you experience. Contact our office and one of our experienced attorneys will review your situation and work with you to protect your long-term interests.