Articles Posted in Dog Bites

duffy-brook-350225-copy-300x200You may know that California has one of the highest rates of dog bites and animal attacks in the country, with thousands of dollars in insurance payouts every year for dog bite injuries. Given that California is a strict liability state when it comes to dog bites, it is extremely important for anyone who is considering bringing a new dog into the family to know about a new adoption law that is designed to protect potential adopters. While the new law is aimed at providing families with more information about whether a dog may have a history that could make a dog bite more likely in the future, the impetus remains on adopters to ask questions about the dog’s viciousness. A recent article in CityWatch discusses the new law and what it could mean for dog owners in dog bite cases.  

California Governor Signs New Law Concerning Potential Dog Adopters

On October 2, 2019, Governor Gavin Newsom sign AB 588 into law. The new law, according to the article, “is important to anyone who adopts, or considers adopting, a dog from any animal shelter, human society, or “rescue” group in California and to anyone living in a community where an adopted dog is kept.” In short, the new law requires all animal shelters in the state to inform adopters about whether any dog that is four months old or older has bitten a person and broken the skin. Under the new law, the animal shelter is required to inform a person about this type of animal history prior to selling a dog, giving away a dog, or otherwise releasing a dog. The history of bite(s) must be disclosed in writing, along with information concerning the incident in which the dog bite occurred.

duffy-brook-350225-copy-300x200How often do dog bite injuries in Poway happen? Whether you are in Poway or in another part of Southern California, it is important to know that California routinely leads the nation in the highest rate of dog bites, and this year is no different. According to a recent report in the Insurance Journal, California ranked first in dog bite injury claims based on data in a new report. While dog bite claims across the nation did decrease slightly, California continued to have more dog bite claims than any other state by hundreds of incidents. What else should San Diego residents know about the report, and what can we do to prevent dog bite injuries?

 
Report Says California Had More Than 400 Dog Bite Claims in 2018

The Insurance Information Institute (III) and State Farm conduct a report each year on dog bite injury claims. For the 2017 year, the report showed California ranking first in the total number of dog bite injury claims with a total of 488 claims. Across the country, the report for 2017 showed a total of about 3,600 claims, meaning that dog bite injury claims in the state of California accounted for nearly 14% of all dog bite injury claims in the country. A total of $18.7 billion was paid out in 2017.

duffy-brook-350225-copy-300x200When Encinitas residents think about ways to reduce the rate of dog bite injuries and animal attacks, they will likely think about types of both animal and human behavior. However, there are other ways to assess dog bite incidents and to find new ways to reduce serious attacks, particularly among young children. According to a recent article in Tech Times, researchers are turning to YouTube videos in order to study dog attacks and, ultimately, to prevent dog bite injuries.

Can YouTube Provide Information About Dog Attacks?

It is often difficult for researchers to study dog bites by observing the behavior of the dog during the attack. After all, these incidents happen quickly, and the victims rarely have photographic evidence of them. However, dog attacks do often get filmed by witnesses, and many of those videos end up on YouTube. As the article explains, researchers have turned to YouTube in order to “conduct direct observation and analyses of dog bites.”

duffy-brook-350225-copy-300x200Are you more likely to suffer a dog bite injury in Poway if you have a certain type of personality? On the surface, the idea might seem ridiculous. After all, dogs bite for many different reasons and often bite unprovoked. However, according to a recent article in Psychology Today, the notion that certain personality characteristics could place individuals at greater risk of sustaining a dog bite injury might not be so far-fetched. Of course, a dog bite victim’s personality traits are not sufficient to get the owner off the hook in the event a dog does bite. Yet, understanding the relationship between an individual’s personality characteristics and the risk of sustaining a dog bite injury might help residents of Southern California to better protect themselves.

Body Language can Affect the Likelihood of a Dog Attack

According to the article, people who experience anxiety and distress, or more colloquially, those who display the personality characteristic of “neuroticism,” could be more likely to get bitten by a dog. The article cites a previous study on the issue published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, and it seeks to assess whether the research findings in that study are legitimate based on our knowledge of clinical psychology. Can a certain level of neuroticism, which can lead an individual to appear nervous or on edge, increase the likelihood that a dog may bite that person?

duffy-brook-350225-copy-300x200For anyone who owns a dog in Encinitas and does not have insurance protection through a homeowners’ policy, it is important to consider renter’s insurance or other forms of coverage that could protect you in the event of a dog attack, or in the event that a person gets hurt in an accident as a result of a “dog fright,” according to a recent article in Reuters. In other words, dog bite injuries and accidents connected to dog attacks occur more often than you might think, and it is important for injury victims to be able to obtain compensation.

For many dog bite victims, the easiest and quickest way to obtain financial compensation for hospital bills and psychological injuries is to file an insurance claim. When the dog owner does not have insurance, the injury victim often will file a dog bite lawsuit.

Increase in Dog Bite Insurance Claims and Payouts Across the Country

duffy-brook-350225-copy-300x200If you find yourself to be more anxious than the average person in San Marcos, are you more likely to sustain injuries as a result of a dog bite? According to a recent report from CBS News, a study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health contends that “people with an emotionally anxious personality appear to be the likeliest recipients of dog bites.” Moreover, those people also tend to be the least likely to report a dog attack, suggesting that dog bite numbers could be higher than many statistics suggest.

Anxiousness and Likelihood of a Dog Bite Injury

Can dogs really discern when a person is anxious? The authors of the study sought to control for other factors that could play a part in determining the likelihood of a dog bite injury. For instance, in studying almost 700 people in nearly 400 households, the researchers looked at:

duffy-brook-350225-copy-300x200Are there certain breeds of dogs that pose greater risks of dog bite injuries in Vista, California, than other breeds? According to a recent news release from the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), there are breed-specific laws in place throughout the country, including in California, yet these breed-specific laws might not always result in the desired outcome of fewer dog attacks.

Should you change your behavior if you encounter a neighborhood dog that makes the “bully breed” lists, or are there other indicators that you could be at risk of a dog bite incident?

Learning More About Breed-Specific Laws

d9xx3cjoh2s-manu-adan-300x200According to a recent article in Bloomberg, the year 2016 saw a noticeable increase in dog bite insurance claims across the country, including in places like San Marcos. Data from the Insurance Information Institute (III) and other industry groups indicates that “insurance claims for dog bites jumped 18% to 18,123 last year in the U.S.” On average, the cost for insurance companies of a dog bite is $33,230. While that single figure showed a slight decrease from 2015, it nonetheless represents a 70% increase from 15 years ago. Why has the average cost of a dog bite injury continued to remain so high? In short, the III suggests that medical costs are higher and injury victims are receiving larger settlements.

Since National Dog Bite Prevention Week is in April, now is a good time to think carefully about dog bite risks in San Marcos and steps we can take to prevent animal attack injuries.

Total Costs of Dog Bite Injuries Soar in California and Other U.S. States

d9xx3cjoh2s-manu-adan-300x200Residents of San Diego County should be aware that dog bite injuries have been on the rise in California this year. According to a report from CBS News, emergency department visits connected to dog bite injuries have risen by 44% over the last decade in the state. Between 2015 and 2016, dog bite injuries requiring emergency treatment have gone up by about 10%, according to an article in the Modesto Bee. Animal attacks can cause serious and sometimes fatal injuries, especially to young children. What has caused the recent rise in dog bite injuries in California? Who is liable for dog bites in our state?

Rise in Dog Attacks Leaves Experts Confused

As the Modesto Bee article underscores, local animal services employees simply are not certain what has led to the increase in dog attacks in California, particularly the sharp uptick between 2015-2016. The animals services director of Stanislaus County indicated that she “had contacted fellow animal services directors in the state, who had no observations about the data.” Local residents, according to the CBS News report, believe more dog owners are failing to properly train their dogs, which is resulting in more animal attacks across the state. But is there any data to support that conclusion? Currently, the only data we know for certain is that more dog bite injuries are happening in rural counties in California in comparison with urban counties.

Beat-Pitbull-fotomorgana-pasja_fotografijaMany Southern California residents know that they live in a part of the country where dog bites and animal attack injuries tend to occur with some frequency. A recent report from CBS News alerted readers to a pit bull attack that occurred in Van Nuys. The victim sustained serious injuries, including cuts and bite marks to his hands and face. As a result of his injuries, the victim required hospitalization. According to the report, the incident occurred shortly before 5:15 p.m. on a Thursday evening in a local business parking lot. This is not the only dog attack in recent memory. A recent article in the Castro Valley Patch reported that a woman was attacked by a dog late last month, and she required hospitalization to treat the multiple bite wounds she sustained. That incident occurred just before 10:00 a.m. on a Monday morning near a local golf course.

Are dog attacks actually this common in Southern California? What can we do to prevent them?

Recalling a Deadly Dog Bite Incident in San Diego Last Spring