IT'S MORE TO US, IT'S PERSONAL
Advocacy for Tennessee Dog Attack Survivors:
Choose a Dog Bite Lawyer Chattanooga Residents Trust
In the blink of an eye, our favorite moments can turn into nightmares. Your peaceful morning jog suddenly interrupted by a growling dog pulling free of their leash and lunging for your arm. Your elderly mother tending to her garden, only to be blindsided and left bedbound by an aggressive dog. Your child, bleeding from multiple bites, pounding on the front door with your neighbor’s Rottweiler in hot pursuit.
4.5 million people each year experience a dog attack in some form - a majority of them children under 10. Long after the bite wounds and lacerations heal, the emotional damage of a bite often affects victims years down the road, resulting in PTSD episodes or a lifelong fear of dogs. These incidents happen in every city, including Chattanooga, Tennessee - one of the most dog-friendly cities in the South.
From its expansive dog parks to its pet-friendly restaurants and businesses, Chattanooga fully embraces dogs and their owners. Even so, it’s important to know that not all dog encounters are friendly. While not every dog presents a danger to you and your loved ones, the few that choose to attack can leave lasting imprints on victims, families and communities. If you or a loved one has been injured by a dog, contact an experienced Tennessee dog bite injury lawyer at Wettermark Keith. Our expert injury attorneys have the skills, knowledge, and resources to build you a compelling case and are prepared to pursue justice on your behalf - all the way to the courtroom.
Maintaining Relationships: We Target Homeowners Insurance, Not Dog Owners.
We realize that in some cases the attacking dog belongs to a friend, neighbor, or individual who you have a close relationship with. Understandably, this situation may make you hesitant to pursue a claim of personal injury against them after an attack. In this situation, it’s important to realize that the dog owner’s insurance will cover the damage caused by the animal and that none of their personal finances are being affected.
The dog’s owner is not responsible for directly compensating you after a dog attack - instead, homeowner's insurance policies typically cover dog bites and related injuries. Filing a claim against the owner's homeowner's insurance policy - rather than the owner - can help maintain your relationships and reduce potential conflicts.
Experiencing a dog bite can be deeply unsettling. In the aftermath of an attack, it can be difficult to know where to turn for support. Our personal injury attorneys will take on your case with expertise and compassion, navigating the claims process on your behalf helping you explore your options for filing a claim. By filing against the homeowner's insurance policy of the dog owner, you can seek appropriate compensation for your injuries without worrying about imposing a financial burden on your friend or neighbor.
Common Chattanooga Dog Bite Injuries:
Dog bite injuries leave victims with extensive injuries, many of which produce scars that the victim will have for the duration of their life. The medical bills as a result of one of these attacks can easily leave victims and their families financially strapped if a case against the negligent owner is not pursued. Some of the most common Chattanooga dog bite injuries include:
Dogs have sharp teeth and strong jaws. These can cause puncture wounds that may result in bleeding, infection, and scarring.
A dog's bite can cause deep cuts, tears, or lacerations to the skin, muscles, and other tissues. Lacerations may require stitches or even surgery to repair.
The force of a dog's bite can also cause fractures or breaks in bones, especially in the hands, arms, and legs.
If a person falls or is knocked down during a dog attack, they may sustain head injuries such as concussions, skull fractures, or traumatic brain injuries.
A dog attack can be a traumatic experience, and victims may suffer from emotional distress, anxiety, or PTSD.
It is important to seek medical attention immediately after a dog attack - dog bite injuries can lead to serious health complications if left untreated, including infection.
Dog Breeds With the Highest Attack Rates
While it is true that any dog has the potential to bite, certain dog breeds have been associated with a higher risk and incidence of attacks. These breeds have a historical background of being bred for protective or fighting purposes, which can contribute to their potential for aggression.
However, it is important to note that individual dogs' behavior can vary greatly, and breed alone is not always a reliable predictor of aggression. Factors such as socialization, training, and owner handling also influence a dog's behavior and likelihood to attack. If you or someone you know has been involved in a dog attack, immediate medical attention should be sought, and the incident should be reported to animal control or law enforcement. Consulting with a personal injury attorney can also provide guidance on your legal options and potential compensation for your injuries.
In Chattanooga, the dog breeds most commonly involved in animal attacks include:
Pit Bulls, including the American Pit Bull Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, and American Staffordshire Terrier, are frequently implicated in dog bite cases. This can be attributed to their strength, protective instincts, and a history of being bred for dogfighting. Despite comprising less than 6% of the U.S. dog population, Pit Bulls account for 60% of all injuries and 63% of ocular injuries from dog bites, over eight times more than any other breed. Pit Bull bites are also 213% more likely to result in severe injuries.
Rottweilers are a large and robust breed that can exhibit aggressive behavior if not properly trained and socialized. From 2005 to 2017, Rottweilers were involved in 45 reported attacks, second only to Pit Bulls. However, with appropriate care and upbringing, Rottweilers can be as gentle and sociable as any other breed.
German Shepherds are loved throughout the United States as family pets, working dogs, and faithful companions. However, they can display defensive aggression without proper training and socialization. Nationally, this tendency ranks them third for dog bite incidents.
Mixed-breed dogs or "mutts" can have diverse temperaments and physical traits due to their varied genetic backgrounds, which can influence their potential for aggressive behavior. Their involvement in dog bite incidents is often a result of these varied genetic traits.
Other Large Breeds
Other large breeds, like Doberman Pinschers, Boxers, and Great Danes, commonly feature in dog bite cases due to their size and potential for strong bites. However, their involvement depends on a mix of factors, including temperament, genetics, and upbringing.
Effective prevention of dog bites involves responsible pet ownership, appropriate training, and fostering positive interactions between dogs and humans. It's essential to approach all dogs with care and respect, regardless of their breed. If you've been involved in a dog bite incident, consider seeking assistance from our expert dog bite attorneys.
Wettermark Keith: Advocates for Dog Bite Victims in Chattanooga
Without a solid understanding of the legal landscape, it can be incredibly difficult to determine the right course of action post-dog attack. Our expert dog bite injury lawyers are equipped to handle even the most intricate dog bite cases, offering support and compassion every step of the way. We offer crucial consultation services to victims, helping them understand their options and guiding them through the claims process.
Our goal at Wettermark Keith is not only to secure rightful compensation for your injuries but also to alleviate your concerns about the potential financial burden on the dog owner. To this end, our attorneys will initiate the case against the owner, but the responsibility for any financial compensation awarded rests with their insurance company. In this way, we balance the pursuit of justice for victims with the preservation of harmonious relationships within the community.
At Wettermark Keith, we believe in taking cases personally. With offices located in Alabama, Tennessee, and Florida, we have an excellent reputation in many practice areas, including dog bite law. Our purpose is to practice with care and compassion - to tell our clients’ stories and make their voices heard. We do this by building strong relationships based on constant communication and an unwavering dedication to truth and trust. Winning cases isn’t our goal - caring for you is. Winning is just how we show it. It’s more to us, it’s personal.
If you have been injured due to the negligence of another person and suffered a dog bite injury, contact our top injury lawyers today. Together we can seek a financial compensation figure that meets your needs as a victim and can continue to provide for you, long after this ordeal is over.
No Recovery, No Fee
We understand that the aftermath of a dog attack can be a challenging time for victims and their families. This understanding informs our approach to every case we take on, regardless of its complexity. To this end, our firm operates on a contingency fee basis, meaning that if we don’t win your case, you won’t pay us anything. We choose to operate this way for the benefit of our clients - we want to see you obtain a successful recovery and continue your life.
Contact our team at 877-715-9300 if you or a loved one have suffered a dog bite injury or lost a loved one to a wrongful death after sustaining a dog bite injury. Fill out the free case evaluation form on our web site and we will get back to you promptly. If you wish to speak to us directly, feel free to call one of our three branches.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, you can hold a dog owner liable for a dog bite in Tennessee under certain circumstances. Tennessee follows a "one-bite rule" or "common law" approach, which means that the dog owner may be held responsible if they had prior knowledge of the dog's dangerous propensities or if they were negligent in preventing the dog from causing harm. Consulting with a personal injury attorney can help you determine if you have a valid claim and navigate the legal process.
No, strict liability does not apply for dog bites in Tennessee. Under the "one-bite rule," dog owners are generally not automatically held liable for the first bite or attack by their dog unless they had prior knowledge of the dog's dangerous or aggressive behavior. In Tennessee, to hold a dog owner liable for a dog bite, the victim must establish that the owner knew or should have known about the dog's dangerous propensities, such as a previous history of aggressive behavior or a propensity to bite. Additionally, the victim must demonstrate that the owner failed to take reasonable steps to prevent the dog from causing harm, such as keeping it restrained or properly supervised.
Yes, if you have been bitten by a dog, you have the right to file a personal injury claim and pursue damages for your injuries. After a dog bite, reach out to a Wettermark Keith dog bite attorney to receive the necessary guidance and support you need to take on this process. Their expertise can help ensure your rights are protected and that you have the best chance of obtaining the compensation you deserve.
You may be eligible to recover various types of damages after a dog bite, including medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, pain and suffering, emotional distress, lost wages, and property damage. The specific damages available to you will depend on the circumstances of your case and the extent of your injuries. Consulting with a personal injury attorney can help you assess your damages and pursue a compensation amount that meets your needs.
In Tennessee, if the dog that bit you had no previous history of aggression, it may make it more challenging to establish liability - but not impossible. Tennessee follows a "one-bite rule" or "common law" approach when it comes to dog bite cases. This means that typically, dog owners are not automatically held liable for the first bite or attack by their dog unless they had prior knowledge of the dog's dangerous or aggressive behavior. However, it's important to consult with a personal injury attorney in Tennessee who can evaluate the specific circumstances of your case. They can assess whether any exceptions or specific circumstances exist that could still hold the dog owner liable, such as negligence on the owner's part or other relevant factors. An attorney can guide you through the legal process, help gather evidence, and determine the best course of action to seek compensation for your injuries.
After a dog bite incident, it is vital to prioritize your health and safety. Seek immediate medical attention for your injuries, no matter how minor they may seem. Additionally, try to identify the dog and its owner, if possible, and gather their contact information. It is advisable to report the incident to local animal control or law enforcement authorities, both for your own protection and others. Finally, consider consulting with a personal injury attorney experienced in dog bite cases to understand your legal rights and options.