Most dogs are friendly, loving, and an important part of a family. But like humans, some dogs may end up harming or injuring someone. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 4.5 million dog bites take place every year in America, and almost one out of five bites become infected.
If you’re dealing with a bite infection or injury inflicted by someone else’s dog, you may want compensation for your damages. However, you may be concerned about the possibility the dog may have to be put down. It’s a natural response, particularly because many of us love dogs and don’t want a dog to be put down because of a one-time mistake.
The question is: is euthanasia automatic when a dog bites someone? To answer that question, it’s important to understand New Jersey’s laws concerning dog bites.
New Jersey Law Regarding Dog Bites
The government addresses dog bites by creating laws to protect the public. The law in New Jersey (New Jersey Statute 4:19-16) states that a dog’s owner can be liable for any damages when their dog bites someone. The dog’s behavior prior to the bite is not a factor when establishing whether the dog’s owner responsibly handled the dog or was negligent in protecting the public.
New Jersey also has something called a “vicious dog law.” This law leaves it to a court to ascertain if the dog who attacks someone is vicious. Under the law, any dog the court finds to be vicious will be euthanized.
You may not want to report a dog bite because of the consequences that might follow for the dog. Understand that in New Jersey, not all dogs that bite are euthanized or removed from their owner’s home.
It’s always a good idea to explain your situation to an attorney to get an idea of what may happen if you report a dog bite.
Why Should You Report a Dog Bite?
A dog’s jaws are often strong enough to inflict serious injuries when they bite someone. Depending on the injury, you may need treatment, physical therapy, or even plastic surgery.
Children are especially vulnerable to serious injuries from dog bites. They can be permanently scarred and need long-term treatment.
Dog bites are also capable of causing:
- Rabies and other infections
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Physical injuries
- Death from injuries
New Jersey law allows for compensation for all of these types of damages. While you may be understandably concerned about the dog that attacked you, it’s also important to recover for any losses that you incurred as a result of the attack. To that end, you should speak with an attorney to discover your options and get on the road to recovery, physically and financially.
Get Help from an Experienced New Jersey Personal Injury Attorney
The attorneys at Lomurro Law understand the compassion you may feel for a dog – even one that bites you. When you speak with one of our skilled personal injury attorneys, we’ll be able to give you an idea of what could happen to the dog should you decide to file a claim. Many times, the victim can recover financial compensation for their injuries without harming the dog in any way.