Dog Bite

Dogs. Many of us love them. They come in all shapes and sizes and can be found nearly everywhere. There are working dogs, show dogs, and loveable pets. Some dogs are large while others are small. Most are gentle friends to their families. However, statistics sadly show us that each year, millions of innocent children and adults are seriously injured or even suffer wrongful death as a result of dog bite attacks. When this happens, your Idaho personal injury attorney at Racine Olson can help. We’ve had these before and we know the trauma that can come after suffering a dog attack. If you or a loved one has suffered a dog bite and don’t know what to do, we urge you to contact a lawyer here at Racine Olson as soon as possible.

The Law Surrounding Domestic Animals Including Dogs

The law surrounding dog bites and other domestic animal injuries in Idaho is fairly straightforward. It’s usually the facts that muddy the water. For instance, Idaho does not recognize dangerous breeds, but proceeds on a dog by dog basis. If the owner knows or should have known that the animal is vicious or likely to bite someone, then he or she is liable for harm caused by it should it injure a person. Boswell v. Steele, 158 Idaho 554, 348 P.3d 497 (Ct. App. 2015). This rule only applies if the dog is on its owner’s property. If the animal is trespassing on someone else’s land and bites a person, then the dog’s owner can be held liable whether or not he or she knew of the dog’s dangerous propensities. Id. Due to these nuances regarding injuries from animals, it is always best to retain an attorney who is familiar with the law.

Keep Your Child Safe

It seems that children are often the victims of dog bites and that the injuries are worse for them when they occur. However, there are several things that parents or caring adults can teach kids in order to help them be safe when they are around dogs or other unfamiliar pets.

First, no child should touch a dog’s food bowl or be around it when the animal is eating. Many dogs are territorial about their food and will bite to “protect” it from those the animal perceives is attempting to take it.

Second, children should refrain from pulling on various parts of a dog’s body. A large dog may not mind so much when a child pulls on its ears. However, a smaller dog may act violently to it since it hurts him more than a larger breed.

Third, a child should not approach an unfamiliar dog quickly. This can cause the dog to think that he is being attacked and will defend itself. This same rule applies to the dog’s owner. Oftentimes, the dog will come to the owner’s “rescue” if it believes an attack is happening. Remember, when there is a dog in close proximity, do everything in slow motion. This tends to alleviate stress in the animal.

Finally, it seems like it would go without saying, but always ask permission of the dog’s owner prior to touching or petting them. Then approach slowly and extend a hand so the dog can sniff or lick it. This allows the animal to get to know the person.

Threatening Situations

Sometimes we get into a situation where a person may feel threatened by a dog. So what are some things you or your loved one can do to avoid injury?

First, the person should remain calm. Don’t scream or yell. This only escalates the stress of the situation in both the animal and the person. Speak calmly, firmly and softly. These ways of speaking to an animal generally dispels anxiety, and it recognizes that there is nothing to be frightened of.

Back away slowly. In other words, don’t make any sudden movements. The more space you get between yourself and the aggressive animal, the less likely it is to attack. It wants to protect its territory and once you are out of that area, it will relax. As you back up, don’t turn your back on it.

Get Help

If you have been bitten, get medical help. Direct the authorities to the animal so that it can be tested for any disease. In other words, take care of yourself first.

After getting the necessary medical help, give us a call. Racine Olson has been doing this for many years. Collectively, we have decades of experience. We take a team approach to solve client problems. We will retain the best experts and work hard to get you the best result. Give us a call. Problem solved.

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