Your precious little puppy has never bit anyone, but that doesn’t mean it won’t happen. When provoked, instinct takes over and anything can happen. A common occurrence is when someone is trying to break up a dog fight, and their hand gets caught in the middle. Canines’ protective nature may result in a dog bite liability claim. Our client Randy experienced this situation when his dog escaped from his grasp and went after another dog, walking with his owner. His dog Ranger had never shown signs of aggression, nor had he ever bit anyone. For unknown reasons, he was suddenly charging at this dog and they immediately began to fight. The dog’s owner attempted to break up the fight and was subsequently bit on the hand. Fortunately, Ranger had all his shots, and the “referee” did not lose any digits. The victim was bleeding badly, and an ambulance was called to attend to his needs. The result was stitches and a somewhat visible permanent scar. There was a sizeable settlement paid for medical bills, pain and suffering, as well as loss of income. Personal injury attorneys are well versed in settling a claim like this. If you are the victim of a dog bite, we recommend you consult the advice of an attorney to see what your compensation might be.
According to the Insurance Information Institute www.iii.org in 2017 there were nearly 20,000 dog bite incidents nationwide. Nearly $700,000,000 was paid out in claims. Please keep in mind that in addition to the amount of settlement awards, your renters insurance may also cover the defense costs associated with the claim. Even the most gentle of dogs can have a bad day. If you own a particular breed of dog, your costs may be higher or you may not be eligible for coverage altogether. You may want to look into having your dog enrolled in a good citizen class to ensure that they are gentle enough to be insured.