Answers to Your Wisconsin Dog Bite Questions

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From helping you after a dog attack or truck accident in Wisconsin to defending your rights as a rider, the personal injury trial attorneys at Hupy & Abraham will be fierce advocates in your time of need.

With offices across Wisconsin, Illinois, and Iowa, and representing clients hurt by slip and fall incidents, car accidents, wrongful deaths, drug and medical device injuries, dog bites, nursing home abuse and motorcycle crashes, we are available where you need us and when you need us.

Contact our professional team of Midwest injury attorneys by calling 800-800-5678 today for your free consultation.

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  • What is meant by “breed-specific” dog bite laws, and why does the American Bar Association oppose these laws?

    Some people believe that certain breeds of dogs are more dangerous than others and should be regulated or banned. Laws that apply only to certain breeds of dogs are known as “breed-specific” laws.

    In Wisconsin, breed-specific dog bite laws usually target Pit Bulls and closely related breeds, such as American Pit Bull terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, English Bull Terriers, Rottweilers, and American Bulldogs. However, breed-specific laws may include Mastiffs, Doberman Pinschers, Chow Chows, German Shepherds, Dalmatians, and any mix of these breeds. In some cases, breed-specific laws are written to also include dogs that resemble these breeds.

    According to the American Human Society, there is no evidence that breed-specific laws prevent dog attacks. Experts at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have stated that when certain dog breeds are regulated, those who want vicious dogs train other, unregulated breeds to become aggressive.

    There is another unintended consequence of breed-specific laws. Instead of giving up their pets, some owners hide dogs belonging to regulated breeds. These dogs miss out on outdoor exercise and socialization. They are not given regular veterinary care. They are not spayed or neutered, and they are not licensed or microchipped. Hiding the dogs hurts both the dogs’ welfare and public safety.

    The American Bar Association encourages laws that help prevent Wisconsin dog bites and enhance public safety. These include leash laws, dog licensing laws, anti-tethering laws, and the banning of animal fights. They also encourage the passage of dangerous dog laws. These laws penalize owners of vicious dogs, regardless of breed.

    Only a handful of cities in Wisconsin still have breed-specific dog bite laws. These cities include Milwaukee. If you are bitten by a dog in Wisconsin, it is important that your Milwaukee dog bite attorney have experience with both state and local dog bite laws. The attorneys at Hupy and Abraham have that experience and will fight to get you all the compensation you deserve. To schedule a free consultation, contact Hupy and Abraham at 800-800-5678.

     

  • My sister Rachel will be hosting Thanksgiving this year. She has a large German shepherd who is friendly but is not used to children. How can I make sure that my children are safe during the celebration?

    When my extended family gets together, the celebrations are boisterous, fun, and loud. There are children everywhere. This is great for me, but it can be nerve-wracking to a dog. Even normally friendly dogs may bite when little visitors invade their territory.

    Parents can help prevent holiday dog bites. Your first step should be to talk to your children. Remind them that Aunt Rachel owns a dog and that the dog is friendly, but isn’t used to children. Tell them that dogs don’t like hugs and kisses and remind them not to pet the dog until an adult says it is okay. Teach them to stay still like a tree if the dog approaches.

    Then talk to your sister. Ask her if she will have a quiet place for the dog if he becomes agitated or upset. Ask her to wait until everyone is settled in before introducing the dog to your children. Make sure that someone will be watching the dog at all times and looking for signs of stress.

    Signs of stress that indicate a dog may bite:

    • The dog yawns
    • The dog licks his chops
    • The dog shows the white part of his eye in a half-moon shape
    • The dog growls or bares his teeth
    • The dog turns his head away
    • The dog walks away or tries to hide under furniture
    • The dog freezes and becomes very still with his mouth closed
    • The dog stares intently
       

    If you see any of these signs, isolate the dog immediately.

    Never leave a child alone with the dog. If possible, assign one adult to be in charge of each child. That adult should have no other tasks.

    Spending time with family is an important part of the holidays. However, a dog bite can ruin both Thanksgiving dinner and family relationships. Advance planning can protect both your children and your relationship with your sister.

    Happy Thanksgiving. The Milwaukee dog bite attorneys at Hupy and Abraham hope your holiday is injury-free. If you should need us, we are available at 800-800-5678.

  • What is the difference between a dangerous dog and a vicious dog in Illinois?

    Illinois statute 510 is the Animal Control Act. This act defines the terms “dangerous dog” and “vicious dog” and outlines the laws that affect these dogs and their owners.

    A "dangerous dog" is a dog that shows tendencies that may cause the dog to bite in the future. A dangerous dog is defined as:

    • A dog who behaved in a way that would be as threatening while off its owner’s property and unmuzzled, unleashed, or otherwise unattended by its owner; or
    • A dog that has bitten without justification and has caused minor physical injury.

    A dog that growls and barks when you knock on the door is not dangerous because it is on its owner’s property. A dog that jumps on your child and knocks her down while she is on the sidewalk may be dangerous. Any dog that bites but does not draw blood can be considered dangerous under Illinois law.

    Once a dog has caused a serious physical injury, it becomes a “vicious dog.” For a dog to be declared a vicious dog, one of the following must be true:

    • The dog attacked a person without justification and caused serious physical injury or death.
    • The dog was found to be a "dangerous dog" on three separate occasions

    A dog that attacks someone who is breaking into a home or causing the dog harm is not vicious, because the dog was provoked.

    Although these laws are designed to protect the public, it isn’t easy to have a dog declared vicious or dangerous. Illinois law protects dog owners by giving dog owners a chance to prove that the dog’s behavior was provoked and the dog’s actions were justified.

    If you have been bitten by a dog in Illinois, the “vicious dog” hearing may effect your case. Contact a Rockford dog bite attorney to learn how you can protect your rights and make sure that the dog doesn’t attack again. To schedule a free consultation, contact Hupy and Abraham at 800-390-6350.

     

  • I do not want my dog to be the cause of a bite in Milwaukee. Do you have any tips that will prevent me from setting my dog up for failure?

    Some dogs have a predisposition to act in an aggressive manner, but for the most part dogs that act out have been brought up in an unhealthy atmosphere. Dogs need a lot of attention and love. They need to be trained and socialized. Without these things they may become the cause of a Milwaukee dog bite.

    As a dog owner, you should not only bring up the puppy in the correct ways but you should also avoid putting him in situations that will set him up for failure. It is your responsibility as an owner to not only keep him safe but also keep him from acting out.

    Three steps you can take to keep from setting your dog up for failure are:

    • Use caution in new situations. When introducing your dog to new situations, use caution. You will want to be ready to respond to any signs that your dog is starting to feel uncomfortable. If you see your dog is uncomfortable, remove him from the situation immediately.
       
    • Stay away from threatening situations. You should never put your dog in situations where he could be threatened or teased. If you find yourself in a situation like this, keep your dog with you.
       
    • Don’t play aggressively. Do not play games with your dog that involve aggressive behavior. Games like tug-of-war could encourage the dog to act in inappropriate behavior.

    If experience a dog who acts aggressively and attacks you, you may be entitled to compensation. To discuss your legal options contact an experienced Milwaukee dog bite attorney at Hupy and Abraham. Call 800-800-5678 today for a free legal consultation.

     

  • Who’s at high risk of suffering a dog bite injury? Should I contact a Quad Cities dog bite lawyer if I was hurt by a dog, but I was not in a high-risk category?

    Let’s answer your second question first. If a dog has bitten you, then it doesn’t matter whether you are considered to be at high risk for suffering from a dog bite injury. You should contact a Quad Cities dog bite lawyer to discuss your legal rights and possible recovery.

    The high-risk category for dog bite injuries has nothing to do with your legal recovery. Instead, it based on statistics compiled by the government and other interested groups. The information may help with dog bite prevention and education. Risk analysis may help to prevent future accidents and resulting injuries, but it does not exclude anyone from recovering damages for his injuries if he has a valid Iowa dog bite accident case.

    That said, those at highest risk of suffering a dog bite injury may be:

    • Young children.
    • Elderly people.
    • Those in certain high-risk occupations, such as postal workers who make frequent deliveries to homes.

    If you have been injured by a dog in Iowa then it is important to consult with an experienced Iowa dog bite lawyer regardless of whether you are considered to be at high risk for suffering a dog bite injury. Our Quad Cities dog bite attorneys welcome your call today at 563-275-6892 or 888-807-2752 for an initial consultation, and we encourage you to read our FREE dog bites brochure.

  • Do you have any tips on how I can prevent my dog from causing a Wisconsin dog bite?

    Being the victim of a dog bite in Milwaukee can be a traumatic and painful experience. Having your dog be the cause of a dog bite can have its downside as well.

    Many people look at their dogs as another family member, therefore, thinking your dog is perfect is a natural thing. As a loving dog owner you may think that your dog is perfect and would never harm another person or dog.

    The majority of dogs that attack are usually not properly socialized or are mistreated. Although this is true, it does not mean your dog won’t be provoked by another person or dog. When a dog becomes stressed or anxious he may revert back to his animal instinct and bite.

    If you somehow find yourself and your dog in a situation where you think he may bite another dog or person you should:

    • Leave the area. The easiest and quickest way out of a situation with your dog is to simply leave. Getting your dog away from the situation will give him time to calm down and gather composure.
    • Get his attention. Get your dog’s attention and let him know you are there with him. He may just need to see or hear you and realize that he is not alone in the situation. Once you get his attention, call him over and calm him down.
    • Intervene. If you see your dog begin to get upset, you should intervene and distract him from whatever is causing him to get worked up.

    Although you take the necessary steps to prevent a dog bite does not mean others will do the same. If you have been involved in a dog attack you may be entitled to compensation. Call 800-800-5678 to contact an experienced Wisconsin dog bite attorney at Hupy and Abraham for a free legal consultation.

  • I was bitten by a dog in Cedar Rapids. It is not a serious bite, but I have diabetes and I know I have special risks. Why are dog bites so dangerous to those with diabetes?

    Diabetes affects one’s ability to fight infection and heal after an injury.

    The mouths of dogs are home to hundreds of different types of bacteria and viruses. Some of these are very dangerous to humans. When a dog bite contains small levels of a dangerous bacterium, a healthy person will be able to fight off an infection. A person who has diabetes may not.

    Any diabetic person who is bitten by a dog in Iowa should see a doctor immediately and watch for signs of infection. These include:

    • Redness
    • Swelling
    • Fever
    • Red streaks
    • Discharge from the wound
    • Swollen lymph glands
       

    A dog bite can cause more than infection. The stress of recovering after an Iowa dog bite can affect blood sugar and put the dog bite victim at risk of hypoglycemia, hyperglycemia, or diabetic shock.

    Diabetic dog bite victims should take all diabetes medications and insulin according to their regular schedule. They should test their blood glucose every four hours and weigh themselves every day. They should not skip meals.

    See a doctor if you have any of the following symptoms of infection or diabetic emergency:

    • You have lost five pounds or more.
       
    • You have a fever over 101 degrees.
       
    • You feel too sick to eat normally.
       
    • You are unable to keep food down.
       
    • You have difficulty breathing or chest pain.
       
    • You feel sleepy or lethargic.
       
    • You are unable to think clearly.
       
    • There is a moderate to high amount of ketones in your urine.
       
    • Your blood glucose is lower than 60 mg/dL or higher than 300 mg/dL.
       

    Iowa dog bite victims have a right to expect compensations for any dog bite-related medical bills. This can include diabetic treatment. To learn more about your rights, contact Hupy and Abraham at 888-807-2752 and ask to schedule a free consultation with a Cedar Rapids dog bite attorney.

  • I have recently become the victim of a dog bite in Gurnee and believe the dog was vicious. What is the meaning of a vicious dog?

    Being attacked by a dog can be a shocking and devastating event. Many people who are victims of a dog bite will suffer from severe injuries that have long-term complications. They may also suffer from mental distress and a new fear of dogs. Fortunately, in Illinois there are strict statutes that hold the owner of the dog responsible.

    One of the ways a victim can easily prove that the dog owner is liable is if the dog is considered to be vicious. A vicious dog must be enclosed in a fence or structure that is at least six feet high and the fence must prevent the children from entering. A dog is considered vicious when:

    • It shows unprovoked danger. A dog may be considered vicious if it bites or attacks a human or any other domestic animal when it is unprovoked.
    • Has known aggressive tendencies. When a dog has a known tendency or disposition to attack without being provoked it may be vicious. It may also be vicious if it endangers the safety of a human or domestic animals.
    • Has a bad reputation. A dog may be considered vicious if the dog has a known reputation for viciousness, for dangerous actions, or for attacking humans or other animals when unprovoked.
    • Is dangerous. If the dog has been identified as a “dangerous dog” on at least three occasions it will be classified as vicious.

    If you are the victim of a dog bite, it is important that you seek legal recovery as soon as possible. To discuss your legal options, contact an experienced Illinois dog bite lawyer at Hupy and Abraham. Call 866-625-2299 for more information and a free case evaluation.

  • I was bitten on the hand by the neighbor’s dog. The wound does not look serious, and I know the dog is healthy and has had all of its shots. Do I still need to see a doctor for my Wausau dog bite?

    It is always a good idea to see a doctor after a Wisconsin dog bite attack. Most people underestimate the severity of a dog bite injury. While your wound may look small at the surface, a dog’s teeth are long and pointy and can do significant damage under the skin.

    It is especially important to see a doctor if you are bitten on your face, head, hands, or feet. Bites on the face or head can leave scars. Immediate treatment can help minimize the scarring. Bites to the hands or feet have a high risk of injuring nerves, tendons, or ligaments that are close to the skin. Damage to these structures can affect function and cause permanent disability.

    Dog bites also pose a high risk of infection. Dogs can carry more than 100 disease-causing bacteria in their saliva. Common dog bite infections include pasteurellosis, cellulitis, and tetanus. Washing is a good first step, but it can be difficult to clean a wound well enough to prevent infection. A doctor can look at the wound and prescribe an antibiotic if there is a risk of infection.

    You should also see a doctor if:

    • You don't know or are not sure if animal that bit you has had all its shots.
    • You have a medical condition such as diabetes, cancer, lung disease, or HIV that affects your immune system.
    • It has been more than five years since your last tetanus shot.
    • The bite is red or swollen or you develop a fever.

    There is another reason to see your doctor after a Wisconsin dog attack. The medical records from your doctor’s visit will help create a paper trail that documents your injury. This is important if you develop complications and decide to seek insurance compensation.

    Wisconsin dog bite victims may be eligible for compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, disfigurement, and disability. If you have trouble getting the insurance compensation you deserve for your dog bite injury, contact the Wausau dog bite attorneys at Hupy and Abraham Call 800-800-5678 to schedule a free consultation.

  • I was recently bitten by a dog in Milwaukee. Is there anything that I should know about the rabies vaccination?

    With any dog bite in Wisconsin, rabies should always be a top concern. Rabies is a virus that may be transmitted to people from the saliva of an infected dog. Once the virus is contacted and the victim begins to show signs of infection, there is little hope: rabies is usually fatal at this point.

    If you have been bitten by a dog in Milwaukee, it is important that you receive the rabies vaccine in order to protect yourself. To receive the rabies vaccine, you will need to contact your doctor and advise him of your situation.

    In order to be more familiar with the vaccine you should know:

    • Not everyone needs it. Not every dog bite victim requires the rabies vaccine. If the dog is known and records are available that the dog has received rabies shots, the victim will not need to get the vaccine.
       
    • There are three types of vaccination. Many people are unaware that there are three different types of vaccines that may be used. All three vaccines—human diploid cell vaccine, purified Vero cell rabies vaccine, and purified chick embryo vaccine—can be administered intramuscularly.
       
    • They will be done in a series of shots. The vaccine must be given more than just once. Your doctor will administer the shots on days 1, 7, 14, 21, and 28.

    Fortunately, with proper care and treatment, rabies can be prevented. However, many other injuries and infections cannot. To seek compensation for these damages, contact a Wisconsin dog bite lawyer at Hupy and Abraham