Dog are considered man’s best friend. They’re loyal, loving, and more often than not, friendly animals that become part of our families and bring us unending joy. That’s why it can be a traumatic experience when you’re bitten by a dog. It can make you or your children feel vulnerable and less safe, even in your own neighbourhood or home.
At Findlay Personal Injury Lawyers in Hamilton, we understand that dog bites can cause pain beyond physical harm, and while our personal injury lawyers cannot restore your state of mind, we can fight for you to receive compensation from the owner responsible.
If you or someone you love has been bitten by a dog, Findlay Personal Injury Lawyers employs a number of legal professionals committed to helping you obtain the compensation you are owed under law. To get an experienced and intelligent legal team on your side today, call 855-862-7258 for your free initial legal consultation.
- Strict Liability Dog Attack Laws in Ontario
- Common Dog Bite Injuries
- Compensation for Dog Bites
- What to Do After a Dog Bite
Strict Liability Dog Attack Laws in Ontario
If you were bitten, or otherwise attacked by a dog, the dog’s owner owes you compensation according to Ontario law. There is no “one free bite” rule in Ontario. Instead, owners are held to a principle of strict liability, which essentially states that anything their dog does, they must answer for.
Dog owners may be held responsible if their dog:
- Attacks a person in a public place
- Attacks a person who has been invited onto their property
- Damages property that belongs to someone else
- Threatens people in such a way that they fear for their safety and are injured trying to avoid the dog
However, a court could determine that you acted negligently in a dog attack. Especially if you were trespassing on property, or acted in a way that made the dog feel threatened, thereby causing it to lash out. If the court concludes that you acted negligently, it may be determined that you were partially responsible for the dog bite and your compensation could be reduced.
Common Dog Bite Injuries
A dog attack of any kind is a jarring experience that can leave you with serious physical and emotional injuries. If a child is bitten or attacked, they may suffer emotional trauma, resulting in a long-lasting fear of dogs and even in some cases, fear of leaving the house or anxiety. Some of the most common injuries from dog attacks include:
- Puncture wounds
- Infections from wounds
- Contusions, abrasions, or hematoma
- Bone fractures
- Joint dislocations
- Emotional trauma and stress
Compensation for Dog Bites
It’s a good idea to hire an experienced dog bite lawyer to make sure you receive compensation equal to what you suffered. Our dog bite attorneys at Findlay Personal Injury Lawyers have extensive experience filing claims after dog attacks, and know what compensation to pursue depending on the degree of your injuries. We’ll work to get the best possible deal for you.
Compensation you may receive from a dog attack lawsuit includes:
- Medical bills for your treatment and recovery
- Wages lost while you recovered from your injury
- Diminished earning capacity, if it results in long-term disability
- Plastic surgery needed to treat disfiguration
- Permanently lowered quality of life
- Compensation for your pain and suffering
- If a loved one dies in a dog attack, a wrongful death claim may be in order
You may be curious whether the dog who attacked you will have to be muzzled or put down as a result of its actions. This is determined in criminal and animal control proceedings that take place separately from your personal injury lawsuit. While you may be called upon to testify in the case, the state will handle any criminal proceedings toward the dog’s owner.
What to Do After a Dog Bite
Because a dog bite can cause severe injuries and infection, it is important to seek medical attention right away. After being treated, you should contact an injury lawyer to find out if you are eligible for compensation for the costs associated with your injury. The order in which you take these steps will depend on the severity of your injuries and other factors. This generalized checklist may be able to help you in the event of a sudden dog attack or bite.
If you have been the victim of a dog bite, here are some basic steps to take:
- Seek medical attention: Dog bite injuries can be serious or even fatal, so you need to get bite victims to the hospital right away, especially if the victim is a child. With dog bites there is the possibility for infection, bodily injury, and rabies. Doctors’ diagnosis and nurses’ statements can help your case, and doctors and nurses can take documentary photographs of your wounds.
- Gather information: Get the dog owner’s contact information before you leave the location of the attack. If you cannot at the time, ask someone to collect names and addresses of witnesses for you. Ask that person to identify the dog, as all dogs should have a license and be kept on a leash. What’s important is to document that you were not on the owner’s property with criminal intent and that you were not at fault or negligent in leading to a dog attack.
- Contact a dog bite lawyer: An experienced dog bite lawyer can help you catalogue your injuries, taking into full account likely future expenses, so that you get the full compensation you are due.
Contact Your Ontario Dog Bite Lawyer Today
If you want to know more about your legal rights in dog bite cases, or just want to know whether your case is worth pursuing a lawsuit over, contact Findlay Personal Injury Lawyers today. For a free legal consultation, call us at 855-862-7258. Our lawyers serve Hamilton, Niagara Falls, Burlington, Stoney Creek, and the surrounding areas in Ontario.