Ah, summer, the season filled with sunshine, picnics in parks, and days at the beach, outdoor backyard parties with friends… and dog bites!
Temperatures are rising, and so are animal attacks. According to the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, every year dog bites by the thousands are reported–with a spike during the summer months. As people and animals head outdoors to soak up the summer sun, dog aficionados say that just like other New Yorkers, dogs can get irritable in the heat and grumpy when another New Yorker gets in their space. Much like that one embarrassing uncle, dogs are potentially being put in more social-gathering situations where they aren’t super comfortable and don’t handle themselves well.
If you or someone you know has been injured by any kind of animal due to the negligence of its owner or handler, you may very well be entitled to compensation. The experienced dog bite lawyers at Greenberg & Stein know a thing or two about how best to handle these situations.
What is it about summertime that makes dogs want to bite?
It’s not just other people’s dogs; the owners of dogs get bitten too! Big or small, male or female, young or old, any dog can bite. Even the cuddliest, fuzziest, sweetest pet can bite if provoked according to The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Dog bites account for about 1% of all emergency room visits, including 44,000 cases per year of facial injuries.
Here are some of the reasons dogs bite:
Some dogs already have a reputation for being violent, aggressive and biting, such as pit bulls, Rottweilers and Doberman Pinchers. While more than 25 breeds were associated with animal attack deaths between 1979 and 1998, the dog breeds that were responsible for more than half of the dog attack deaths during this time were Rottweilers and Pit Bulls.
Protect yourself by learning to read the signs of a pending dig bite! Here are some indicators of a dog who might bite: pinned-back ears, tight lips, a tucked tail, stiff body and heavy panting. Be aware that young children are the most vulnerable for dog bites: children are at the greatest risk for dog bites in the summer, especially to severe bites in the head and neck areas.
In addition to the law and obvious psychological and physical trauma associated with a dog bites; there are health issues with dog bites that people must be made aware of! In fact dog bites have become an emerging health issue. There is a growing concern involving the potential for transmission of as many as 30 different infectious diseases by way of bites from dogs (and cats!). One of the most serious is methicillin-resistant “Staphylococcus Aureus”(MRSA).
New York has a “One-bite rule” and under this rule, as a dog owner, you’re liable for injuries your dog causes only if you had reason to know the dog was dangerous. As the victim, you have to prove the dog had a history of vicious behavior like lunging or biting. The law is really in [the owner’s] favor if the dog bites somebody.
However, if a dog has a history of biting or other vicious behavior that the owner knew about, they can be liable, and their dog could be muzzled, confined or, if the damage is severe, even put down. In order to obtain the highest compensation, it is highly recommended that you work with a qualified New York City dog bite attorney from Greenberg & Stein, P.C.
At Greenberg & Stein, the most common question we get from dog attack victims is “Can I sue?” There are numerous laws in place in the state of New York that may prevent you from suing a dog’s owner directly. New York is a “mixed law” state, which means that the “one bite rule” and strict liability actually both apply.
In most dog bite cases, the only thing that a victim may be able to claim from a dog owner is damages for medical expenses that they accrued during the time that they were injured, because New York is a “mixed state,” and a dog owner is only liable for medical and veterinary costs.
Here are some factors that courts take into account when deciding:
As visitors flood national parks and other wilderness or outdoor areas in summer, attacks against people ramp up. As the warmer weather brings out hikers and campers when wildlife is likely to be active and aggressive – often protecting their young broods from perceived threats.
With challenges like this, authorities warn against getting too close to wildlife. Animal threats can stem from animals that people think are gentle, such as deer, because almost any wild animal is capable of striking, from beavers and groundhogs to owls and swans. Other animal attack “offenders” include venomous snakes, spiders, horses, pigs, raccoons, bees, wasps/hornets, coyotes, wild rats and even crows!
If you have been injured by any kind of animal due to the negligence of its owner or handler, you may very well be entitled to compensation
If you or someone you love were seriously injured from a dog bite attack in the state of New York, then you deserve to see recompense for your pain and suffering. At the law offices of Greenberg & Stein, our New York City dog bite lawyers are here to help you seek the compensation that you rightfully deserve. We will do everything in our power to secure fair compensation for your pain and suffering.
With more than 50 years of collective experience on our side, we know what it takes to successfully pursue cases of this nature, and we are unwilling to back down in the face of a challenge. If you’re looking for a lawyer for a dog bite or animal attack of any kind in New York City, then look no further than Greenberg & Stein, P.C.