Let’s face it: many of us love pets, especially dogs. That is why a staggering over 90 million dogs live in households in the United States. The likelihood of encountering a dog while strolling through a park with your spouse and children is very high.
And while your children would certainly love to cuddle with or pat a dog in the park, be warned that over 800,000 people in our country seek medical attention because of dog bites each year.
A dog bite is rarely some small scratch that will heal on its own within a few days. There is a high risk that a dog bite can lead to a dangerous or even deadly infection, which is why it is vital to seek medical care immediately after you or any of your loved ones have been bitten by a dog in Santa Clarita, Los Angeles, or elsewhere in California.
While it is unfortunate that you were bitten by a dog in the first place, at least you can be certain that with a good Santa Clarita dog bite attorney by your side, you will be able to recover damages since California is one of few states with a strict liability dog bite statute.
Most common types of dog bite infections
If you choose to wait days or even weeks to seek medical attention after a dog attack, not only do you risk losing your right to sue the owner of the dog that bit you, but may also end up suffering some serious and long-term health problems. In the worst-case scenario, you may even die after a dog bite.
“Whoa, that escalated quickly!” you may be thinking. Many people in California tend to forget that in some cases, a dog bite leaves behind more than just a bruise, scratch or a punctured wound. A dog’s mouth is capable of harboring millions of bacteria that can cause severe health problems or even death to humans.
Failure to treat a dog bite infection as soon as possible may cause serious and long-term health problems or even result in death. We asked our experienced dog bite attorney in Santa Clarita from the Compass Law Group, LLP to outline some of the most dangerous infections you should watch out for after a dog attack:
- Staphylococcal infection. This is the most common type of a dog bite infection, which affects nearly 20 percent of all victims after a dog attack. This infection is also called “staph infection,” and can cause a plethora of health issues in addition to skin problems.
- Capnocytophaga infection. Although this type of infection is rather rare, it can cause death if left undiagnosed and untreated. What this deadly dog bite infection does is it weakens the victim’s immune system and spreads to the bloodstream, causing infections in various parts of the body.
- Rabies. Another common type of infection a dog bite victim can contract. This viral infection affects the victim’s central nervous system and can be treated only if the infection is diagnosed at its early stage, before the infection sets in.
Signs of infection after a dog bite
Watch out for these signs if you have been bitten by a dog. “Even if you have already received medical attention immediately after a dog bite, go through another medical checkup if you notice or experience any of the following days or weeks after the dog attack,” says our Santa Clarita dog bite attorney.
- Inflammation. One of the most tell-tale signs that you have been infected is inflammation around the bite area. Normally, inflammation sets in within 24 hours after the attack.
- Skin warm to the touch. If the wound area becomes warm to the touch, you may want to seek medical attention and get it checked.
- Redness. Skin redness around the wound area could also be a sign of infection after a dog bite.
- White discharge or pus. The wound could also ooze pus or white discharge when the victim has been infected after a dog bite.
- Fever. One of the most obvious signs of infection after a dog bite. If your body is trying to battle an infection, you will most likely develop a fever.
Do not panic if you notice any of the above-mentioned signs after a dog bite. Rather, seek immediate medical attention and make sure that you consult with lawyers to obtain compensation for your damages. Infections after a dog bite can be rather costly, and you certainly do not want to pay for your medical expenses out of pocket.