Dogs are humankind’s best friend, but they are still animals that can cause serious damage if not kept under control. Suffering from a dog attack is a very traumatizing experience. Aside from the physical pain and healing you have to go through, dog attacks can cost a lot of money. Even worse, once your physical injuries heal, you might still have psychological trauma that can last a lifetime. 

Dog attacks are fatal in some instances, so it is crucial to seek medical attention as soon as possible after suffering a bite. After seeking immediate medical treatment, one of the most important things that you should do after a dog attacks you is report the dog attack to the proper authorities. 

Why Is Reporting a Dog Attack so Important?

Reporting dog attacks is very important because it helps the government hold dog owners accountable for their animals’ actions. Reporting dog attacks helps ensure that others don’t have to go through the same trauma you did. Thanks to people reporting bites, authorities can keep track of dangerous animals who show a pattern of aggression and protect public safety by dealing with them accordingly. Furthermore, if you plan to file a claim for damages against the dog’s owner, you will want to have an official record of the bite. To top things off, if you are bitten by a dog in California, you have a legal obligation to report the bite to the proper authorities. In this piece, we will discuss reporting dog attacks in California so you can do the right thing if a dog attacks you.

Reporting a Dog Attack in California

In California, you should report any dog attack to two different authorities. First, you should call the police after you are bitten by a dog. When you call the police, you should file a police report including the name of the dog’s owner, their contact information, any information you have about the dog, and a description of what happened. Ideally, you should include photographs of your injuries and a medical record of those injuries in your police report. Including any and all relevant information in your report will help ensure that you can recover compensation for all the damages you suffer as a result of the bite.

Second, and equally important, you should notify your local health department of the dog attack. Both you, as the victim, and the owner of the dog have a legal obligation to report the bite to your local health department. If you aren’t sure what number to call, you can find a directory of all local California health departments here. Once you report the attack, the local health department will conduct its own investigation to verify what happened, evaluate the consequence of the attack, point you in the right direction to seek proper medical care, and impose any relevant consequences on the dog owner and their animal. At the very least, dog owners whose animals attack others are required to quarantine the animal for at least 10 days to ensure the animal is not rabid.

Get the Justice You Deserve

If someone else’s dog attacks you and you suffer injury, the dog’s owner must compensate you for any damages you suffer. The best way to make sure that you recover all the damages you suffer is to retain the services of a personal injury attorney with specific experience with dog attacks. Our team of attorneys at Silva Injury Law, Inc. has considerable experience helping clients recover from dog attacks. Not only will we help you recover the damages you are owed, we will connect you with the right medical providers, including mental health professionals, so that you can fully recover from your injuries. Our founding attorney, Michael Joe Silva, has the experience necessary to help you with all stages of your case. Michael Joe has sat on both sides of civil litigation and has served as a district attorney, so he has an extensive base of courtroom knowledge to draw upon. Our primary goal is compassionate advocacy. We want you to know that we are always here to help our clients, no matter what you need. Let us help you recover from the vicious attack you suffered; contact us today for a free consultation.