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Dallas Dog Bite Lawyer

Our Dallas dog bite attorneys at McGilberry & Shirer bring over 60 years of combined experience to the table, covering various aspects of personal injury law, including animal attacks. We’ve helped over 10,000 clients seek compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, property damage, lost wages and more, and can help you seek justice after an animal attack. Dog owners are responsible for maintaining a reasonable effort in preventing accidents and injuries to visitors.

It’s your right as a dog bite victim in Texas to pursue compensation through the state’s civil justice system. Don’t let a stubborn pet owner decide the “end” of your case. Instead, hire a personal injury lawyer to navigate the state and local dog-related laws in your favor. One of our dog bite attorneys can handle your case with the care and personal attention it deserves, serving the papers with the pet owner allegedly responsible and taking care of communications with insurance companies. We’ll make the process as easy as possible for you and your family.

A dog bite can be a terrifying event that results in a serious injury. Though most dogs are not violent, the fact is that animal attacks, most commonly dog bites, are one of the most frequent personal injury claims. Unfortunately, these attacks can be lethal, as there were 31 dog bite-associated deaths that occurred in 2016. If you or your loved one is a victim of a dog or animal bite, you may be entitled to compensation for your suffering. Under these circumstances, it is essential for you to know your rights in order to secure the justice you deserve.

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Texas Dog Bite Laws

Texas adheres to the “one bite rule” when it comes to dog and animal bites, which means the key to a successful animal bite case can be achieved by proving that the owner of the dog was negligent. The following specifics must be proven for a person to receive compensation following a dog or animal bite related injury:

  • The dog’s owner was aware the dog had bitten someone previously or had exhibited aggressive behavior.
  • The dog’s owner was negligent in either managing the dog or taking reasonable measures to stop the bite from happening. The victim’s injuries are directly attributable to this negligence. Our premise liability lawyers can help you build a case to prove that in court.

Possible Effects of an Animal Attack

Depending on the attack, dog and animal bites can have the following effects on victims:

  • Infections such as rabies, bacteremia, and tetanus can be contracted
  • Physical injuries, such as skull fractures, bruised skin, lacerations, puncture wounds, broken bones
  • Long-term psychological harm, including anxiety disorders and phobias associated with the trauma of the incident
  • Death, in very serious cases a dog or animal bite can result in death

Seeking Compensation for Dog Bites and Animal Attacks in Texas

Depending on the severity of the injury, victims of dog-bites and animal-assaults may be able to retrieve the following forms of compensation for losses and damages associated with an attack:

  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost wages
  • Property damage
  • Punitive damages

What to Do After a Dog and/or Animal Bite

Being bitten by an animal can be a truly terrifying experience. If you or a loved one is attacked by a dog or another animal, it is important to take the following steps in order to protect the safety and well-being of all involved.

  • The risk of contracting a serious infection can be lessened substantially when a dog-bite wound is cleaned properly, so it is imperative to seek medical attention as soon as possible.
  • Confirm you are able to recognize the dog(s) or animal(s) who participated in the attack
  • Take photos of any injuries from the attack
  • Confirm the identity of the dog(s) or animal(s) owner

How to Prove Your Dog Bite Case in Texas

Recovering money awards for your dog bite damages hinges on your ability to prove the dog owner’s fault. In Texas, this means proving the owner knew or reasonably should have known the dog could bite, according to the parameters of the one-bite rule. Proving a dog owner’s fault for an attack takes the following elements:

  1. The defendant owned or controlled the dog at the time of the bite. First, you must show that the defendant you’re filing a claim against is the one responsible for the pet at the time of the attack. This may or may not be the dog’s owner depending on the circumstances.
  2. The defendant was negligent. To hold a dog owner accountable for a bite, you will need to prove that the dog’s owner was aware that the dog might bite yet failed to take action to prevent another attack. Examples of negligence include failing to use a leash, to contain the dog, or to patch a hole in the fence.
  3. The negligence was the proximate cause of the dog bite. You will also need to show that the bite would not have happened but for the defendant’s negligence. In other words, that the bite wouldn’t have happened if the owner did what a “reasonable and prudent” person would have in the same situation.
  4. You suffered damages in the attack. Finally, you will need evidence that you suffered real damages in the dog attack. These can include physical injuries, pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, or – as is common in dog attacks – emotional/psychological harms.

Prepare for the defendant to try common dog bite defenses to evade full liability, such as alleging that you instigated the incident, were trespassing, or that the owner had no idea the dog had a propensity for viciousness. Texas is a modified comparative negligence state, meaning that you could still be eligible for compensation even if you were partially at fault. Combatting these allegations, however, can help you maximize your recovery. Our attorneys can help.

How Can an Attorney at McGilberry & Shirer Help?

Pet owners are not often willing to cooperate with a lawsuit regarding a dog bite or attack. Owners may deny culpability for the accident, try to place blame on the victim, or even try to skip town to escape liability. Many animal owners think a lawsuit will ultimately mean the destruction of the animal. The fact is, however, that most dog bite claims conclude during pre-trial settlement negotiations. They don’t go to court or result in consequences other than the pet owner having to pay what he or she legally owes the victim in damages.

When it comes to negotiating a dog bite claim, don’t go it alone. The pet owner’s insurance company may try to deny your claim or offer much less than you deserve. The owner might try to limit his or her liability by saying that you contributed to the attack. Before you say yes to a low-ball settlement offer for serious or disfiguring injuries, consult with an attorney in Dallas. We’re more than happy to go over your rights and potential legal options at no cost or obligation. Also, we operate on a contingency fee basis – no attorney’s fees unless we win.

If you or someone you love has been injured due to a dog or animal bite, contact the Dallas dog bite attorneys of McGilberry & Shirer online or call (972) 392-1225 to schedule a free consultation today. We’ll personally review your case and see to it that your family and loved ones have the best chance of receiving compensation after a dog bite or animal attack.