We love our dogs here in Austin but the experience of being attacked by a dog can be a terrifying. In many cases, dog bites can leave the victim with serious and lasting mental and physical scars. While these are traumatizing enough for adults, consider what it must be like when a small child is the attack victim. In these situations, a dog attack can easily result in fatality. In many states, the law maintains that the owner will be held legally and financially responsible for any unprovoked attacks. However, in some places, a dog is allowed to bite someone once under the assumption that the owner was previously unaware of its aggressive tendencies.  Of course certain breeds tend to be more prone to bites, but that is not always the case.  We have represented victims of many different breeds, including the more friendly toy breeds such as Chihuahua, poodles, and Labradors.  However, the more common dog bites occur from pit bulls, Rottweilers, Dobermans, german shepherds, and great danes.  It makes logical sense that the bigger the dog, the bigger the bite; so those cases tend to attract more attention; but we have seen small toy breeds cause significant injuries, especially with young children who are left unattended, even for a few minutes.

As an Austin dog owner, it’s important to reduce the chances that your pet may attack an innocent person:

  • Have your pet neutered or spayed to eliminate hormone-induced aggression
  • Don’t encourage rough or vicious play in your canine
  • Enroll your dog in obedience classes as soon as you get them
  • Don’t allow children to be left with a dog unattended
  • Keep the dog fenced in or leashed at all times

Some additional advice:

  • If you see an unfamiliar dog, leave him be
  • Don’t bother dogs when they’re sleeping, eating or tending their young
  • Do not leave children alone with a dog, even the family dog
  • Avoid aggressive behavior toward dogs, including looking them in the eye and running from it
  • Be motionless if attacked or threatened by a dog
  • Should a dog knock you over, curl up and protect your head with your arms

Attacked by an Animal in Austin?

In the event of a dog attack, it’s important to seek medical assistance immediately. Afterward, attempt to identify the dog’s owner. To find out if a local Austin animal was in fact listed as a dangerous dog, go to the City of Austin website found on this link: City of Austin, Dangerous Dogs in Austin. You can also see the City’s definitions of what constitutes a dangerous dog, a vicious dog, and what an owner of such a dog must have done to comply with the law. If you or a loved one are the unfortunate victim of a dog attack, please contact our personal injury law firm right away. Starting the claims process as soon as possible can help you receive reimbursement for medical costs and physical and psychological damages. Many people are reluctant to “sue” their neighbor; for more information, see my blog, “When clients say, I don’t want to sue anyone”.

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