Dog Bite Info

Dog Bite FAQ

Dogs may be man’s best friend, but that does not always hold true. While most may view dogs as another member of our families, it is important to realize not all dogs are the same. For this reason, dog bite injuries a more common than most people may be aware. It is no surprise that children are the most common victims of dog bite attacks. At a younger age, all dogs are typically assumed to be friendly, much like someone’s own pet. Since that is not always the case, some of the statistics surrounding dog bites can be staggering. According to the American Humane Society:

  • More than 4.7 million people across the United States report that they are bitten by dogs each year – nearly 1,000 each day.
  • A large majority of dog bite victims are familiar with or knows the dog that bites and injures them.
  • Similarly, many times the dog involved in the attack is the pet of a family member, friend or neighbor.
  • Almost one million Americans receive medical attention each year to treat dog bite injuries.
  • The majority of dog bite accidents, about two out of three, occur either on or near the victim’s home or property.
  • Half of fatal dog bite attacks involve dogs who are not restrained or who are chained.

Victims Most At-Risk of a Dog Bite Attack However, the more staggering statistics come into play when more specific demographics are applied. Despite the Hollywood image of pitbulls on chains in an unsavory area, dog bites occur most often with children and in more family friendly environments:

  • Half of the nearly one million Americans who seek medical attention each year due to dog bites are young children who are either 12 years old or younger.
  • Children are the most common victims of dog bites by far in the U.S. each year and are much more likely to be severely injured from a dog bite than adults are.
  • Most children who are bitten by a dog, or who are the victim of a dog-related injury, will require treatment in the emergency room of a hospital.
  • Senior citizens and the elderly are the second most common victims of dog bites in the U.S.
  • Dog bite victims who are hospitalized are most likely to be either children under the age of five or senior citizens who are 65 or older.

The Financial Implications of Dog Bite Accidents Dog bites are costly for everyone who is involved – the victim, the owner and insurance companies. The following statistics prove just how costly dog bites have become in the U.S.:

  • Insurance companies across the country will pay out more than a billion dollars for dog bite claims each year.
  • The average cost a dog bite victim will incur as a result of hospitalization and continual, sometimes even life-long medical care is almost $20,000.
  • About 30,000 people have to undergo reconstructive surgery each year to repair disfiguring injuries that were caused by dog bites.

According to State Farm Insurance, Pennsylvania currently ranks as one of the top five states in the country in the amount of dog bite accidents that occur each year. In Pennsylvania alone, there are hundreds of dog bite claims each year filed by dog bite accident victims. Moreover, millions of dollars have been paid out to injured dog bite victims each year. Nationwide, the number of dog bite claims on average are on the rise across the. Over the course of the last 16 years, the number of dog bite victims requiring hospitalization or hospital care has increased by 85 percent.

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