What Are The Most Common Causes Of Dog Bite Injuries In Florida?
The most common cause of dog bite injuries in Florida is, as expected when a dog bites a person. Usually, the reason dogs bite another person is because there is some triggering event or external stimulus that causes the dog to bite. Very rarely do dogs bite people without a triggering cause. Dogs protect their territory, such as their favorite place to lay down, their food, or their toys, and if another dog or person attempts to enter their territory, it may trigger a bite incident. Fear is another common cause of why dogs bite. They may not know a person who is entering their property or physical area and maybe scared. For example, I once had a case where a girl was swimming, and when she popped out of the water, a dog got scared and bit her face.
Another common cause of dog bite injuries is when dogs are left unsupervised, either off-leash or if they somehow escape their house or cage. This can cause dogs to be in a position of fear, and more prone to biting. Another reason dogs may bite is out of pure boredom or frustration, such as dogs who are not exercised, because they build up a lot of energy and are easily triggered.
Dog bites are not breed-specific. You can have an aggressive Chihuahua or an aggressive pit bull. The difference is the amount of damage that each breed can cause.
What Are The Common Types Of Injuries That You See In Dog Bite Cases?
Approximately 4.5 million dog bites occur every year in the United States, and nearly one out of every five of those dog bites results in infection. The common injury is usually a puncture wound from the dog’s teeth. If not properly treated, a puncture wound can get infected. Cuts and abrasions are also common types of injuries. If the bite is serious enough, it can leave scarring or nerve damage. There are also emotional injuries, where the victim becomes traumatized and scared of dogs, or sustains scars that make them self-conscious.
Who Is Potentially Liable In A Dog Bite Injury Claim?
In Florida, there is strict liability, which means dog owners are generally liable for all the harms and losses that are caused by their dog. In Florida, dog owners are liable even if their dog hasn’t bitten anybody before or hasn’t shown any signs of past aggression. Also, anybody who could be negligent could also potentially be responsible. Negligence refers to anybody who needlessly endangered the public and thereby caused the injury or the dog bite, and are therefore responsible. For example, if you were visiting your friend’s home and he carelessly lets his dog out of the cage and it bites someone, he would be held liable.
Any person who is negligent, who did something they shouldn’t have done, or who acted carelessly, would also be responsible under the theory of negligence. So there is strict liability, negligence, and also ‘negligence per se’. Negligence per se is where a person violates a statute that is designed or intended to protect folks and the thing that the statute was designed to protect actually occurred. For example, a lot of cities and municipalities have ordinances that say dogs must always be on leashes. So, if you have a dog that is not on a leash and it injures someone, that theory would be called negligence per se because there is a statute to prevent injury, and if that dog injures someone, then that dog owner is negligently per se responsible for all the harms and losses to the person that was bitten by the dog.
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