Canine Attacks and Maulings: Lawsuits & Settlements in Washington State
Dog bites and attacks are very common and can cause serious injuries, including permanent disfigurement, nerve and tissue damage and psychological trauma. In extreme cases, dog attacks may result in death. If you have been attacked by a vicious dog you may need the help of an experienced dog bite lawyer in order to get compensation for your losses.
Chris Davis is considered by many to be the top dog bite law attorney in Washington State. Washington Super Lawyer Magazine featured Mr. Davis in an articled entitled: When The Dog Bites....It's Time to Call in Christopher M. Davis.
Important Information For Dog Bite Victims
- Seattle Passes Vague New Ordinance...Biting Dogs, Seattle Weekly, June 28, 2011.
- Does Seattle's Dangerous Dog Ordinance Have Any Real Teeth?
- Dog Bite Cases: Concerns About Insurance
Review Washington State Dog Bite Laws
Washington’s Dog Bite Law imposes strict liability on the dog’s owner for injuries inflicted by the animal on another personal. The relevant statue, RCW 16.08.040, states as follows:
"The owner of any dog which shall bite any person while such person is in or on a public place or lawfully in or on a private place including the property of the owner of such dog, shall be liable for such damages as may be suffered by the person bitten, regardless of the former viciousness of such dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness."
- Washington State Dog Bite Law
- Seattle Dog Bite Ordinance
- King County Washington Dog Bite Regulations
Washington Dog Bite Statistics
According to the Insurance Information Institute dog bites cost American home insurers 6.4 percent more in 2009 than in the previous year, with the average claim exceeding $24,000 for the third straight year.
Injuries from dog bites and attacks cost $412 million in 2009, compared with $387.2 million a year earlier, the fifth straight increase. The number of claims increased 4.8 percent to 16,586. Nearly 4.7 million people are bitten by dogs each year and 50% of dog bite fatalities are children under 10 years old. These dog bites range from minor injuries to serious dog maulings, resulting in bodily injury and even death. In 2012, there were an estimated 38 fatal dog attacks in the United States.
In the US, approximately 100 children are bitten by dogs every day and approximately 92 of these children will need medical attention. One third of all injury claims against homeowner liability policies are related to dog attacks. Seattle Animal Control sees about 300 dog bites each year. 1 out of 5 of those accidents involved pit bulls, even though only 1 out of 20 dogs in the US are pitbulls.
Top 10 Most Dangerous Dog Breeds
The following dogs can tend to possess more aggressive natures than other breeds and may require special training and handling in order to keep family members, guests, neighbors and the general public safe from attack.
- Pit Bulls
- German Shepherds
- Doberman Pinschers
- Chow Chow
- Presa Canario
- Alaskan Malamutes
There are a number of dog breeds that are often used as guard dogs due to their territorial and protection instincts which can make them excellent guard dogs but dangerous if they are not properly socialized and trained in obedience. These dog include:
- Rhodesian Ridgeback
- Giant Schnauzer