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San Diego Dog Bites, Children Most Common Victims

The threat of dog bites is a reality for San Diegans. We are blessed with great weather. A natural accompaniment to the warmer climate is many opportunities for outdoor activity. For dog owners this means taking the dog for a walk. According to San Diego County Animal Control, San Diego's 3.2 million residents share our County with more than 1 million pets and sheltered animals. Given the facts, it's worthwhile to take a moment to reflect on how dog bites occur, how to prevent them, and what to do if a dog does indeed bite.

Surprisingly, many dog bites take place at the home of a close friend or relative. Similar to various other attacks, visitors to these homes are often lured into a false sense of security around these animals because of the close bond between the owner and the dog. The owner may say, "He's a big dog, but he's harmless."

The statistics are alarming. According to animal behavior expert Dr. Kristy Conn, "approximately four and a half million people are bitten by dogs in the United States every year and one fifth of them end up needing medical attention for their wounds. Children are the most common victims with half of bite wound victims being under the age of thirteen. Children are much more likely to be severely injured by dog bites due to their small size and not being aware of how one should act around a dog. Most dog bites occur while interacting with familiar dogs. It is important to understand that any dog has the capacity to bite..."

In California the dog owner is strictly liable for the injuries resulting from the dog bite. These injuries can be significant. Severe facial disfigurement often occurs. Lifelong physical and emotional scarring result from dog attacks.

Every dog owner should carry an insurance policy that, should their animal bite another person, will pay for the injuries sustained by the victim. This insurance may be homeowners insurance or renter's insurance. However, many of these insurance companies are attempting to exclude from coverage certain breeds and mixed breeds of dogs. Allstate, Safeco, State Farm, Farmers, AAA are just a few of the companies that contain such exclusions.

If you or a loved one has been the victim of a dog bite or attack, or if you or a loved one is hurt, or killed, due to a dog bite or dog attack, experienced legal representation can make all the difference. For over 35 years our attorneys at the Law Office of David P. Beeson have been helping victims of dog attacks. Experience counts. Visit our website at or call us at 619-233-6078.

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