Last spring, thousands and of Pennsylvanians decided to add a puppy to their home during the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. Now that spring is approaching, these full-grown dogs will be outside more, increasing the risks your child might get bitten by a neighborhood dog.

About 4.7 million dog bites happen each year in the United States; 800,000 of them require medical care. Dogs bite children more frequently, because children often don’t know how to interact with dogs safely.

When a dog bites your child

If a dog bites your child, you need to take some immediate safety precautions, including:

  • Separating the dog from your child
  • Cleaning your child’s wound and stopping the bleeding with a clean cloth
  • Bandaging your child’s wound
  • Seeking medical care
  • Contacting local animal control to report the bite and making sure the dog’s owner is aware of the attack
  • Changing your child’s bandage frequently and watching the wound for infection

When an owner is liable for your child’s bite injury

A dog owner can be liable to pay your child’s injury costs from a dog bite if the owner was negligent in having the dog under their control or didn’t follow Pennsylvania dog laws. Victims who suffer serious injuries because of a severe dog bite can recoup medical bill costs as well as other losses and legal damages.

If your child suffered a serious dog bite injury, you should contact an experienced personal injury attorney. An attorney can help you get compensation for your child’s medical bills from a dog bite and other damages if your child suffered a serious injury, such as a broken bone or disfiguring lacerations.

As a parent, you always want to protect your child. However, a dog attack can happen in an instant. You can hold a negligent owner accountable though through a personal injury lawsuit.