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New York Dog Bites

It is frightening to have a dog attack you and bite you. Not only is a dog bite painful, a dog bite leaves you concerned about contracting an infection such as rabies. According to the Centers for Disease Control over 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year. Of that amount, 800,000 bites are serious enough for the victim to seek treatment. The most serious dog bites break the skin, damage nerves and even may result in a broken bone. Attacks by dogs may cause the victim to fall, thereby suffering not just a bite, but also other serious injuries such as a head injury or a back injury. Furthermore, each year between 15-20 dog bites are fatal. Sadly, most dog bite victims are children age 5-9. In 2012 over 27,000 people had to undergo reconstructive surgery after being bitten by a dog. If you are injured from a dog bite you may be entitled to compensation from the dog's owner. Contact an experienced New York Dog Bite Lawyer who will review the facts of your case and help you hold the dog's owner responsible for biting you.

New York dog bite law

Under New York, Agriculture & Markets Law §121(10), an owner of a dangerous dog is strictly liable for medical costs from an injury caused by the dog. In addition to being held liable for medical costs, the owner could be required to pay a fine if it is determined that the owner’s negligence results in a dog bite to either a person, a guide dog, hearing dog, or service dog. The amount of the fine will depend on the seriousness of the injury, whether the dog has already been classified as a “dangerous dog,” and whether the victim was a person or another dog. In New York it is not enough to show that the dog was a vicious breed. What is important is that the dog had a history of aggressive behavior and attacks. It must be shown that the owner had prior notice that the dog had a violent disposition, or that the owner was negligent in their training, control or care for the animal.

Dog bite injuries

Depending on the severity of the attack, wounds from a dog attack could require medications, stitches and even skin grafts. In addition dog bites can lead to serious infections such as Streptococcus, Staphylococcus, and Pasteurella. Treatment for dog bite can involve sutures and sometimes plastic surgery. Antibiotics may be necessary if an infection develops. While rabies in dogs is rare in the United States, if the dog has not been immunized for rabies or the rabies status of the dog is unknown the victim may have to immediately get the rabies vaccine as a precaution. Rabies is an acute viral infection that is often fatal.

Even if well trained, dogs can be unpredictable. Injuries can result from not only being bitten, but also from the dog knocking you down. You can also be injured attempting to flee an attack. Injuries can include not only lacerations and puncture wounds, but also a broken bone, head injury or back injury could result. In some instances, psychological counseling may be necessary to deal with the trauma of the attack itself.


Victims of dog bites are often left with painful injuries and medical bills. In many cases victims must miss work while they recover, particularly where the dog bite results in a broken bone or a head or back injury. Through a personal injury lawsuit the victim can hold the owner responsible for his or her injury. The victim can sue to recover medical expenses as well as lost wages and other out-of-pocket expenses. Furthermore, because being attacked by a dog, being bitten, and being permanently disfigured with a scar are all physically and emotionally painful experiences, the victim may be awarded compensation for pain and suffering. If the dog's owner acted recklessly or willfully, resulting in the dog biting the victim, the court may also award the victim punitive damages.

New York Dog Bite Lawyer

If you or a loved one was attacked by a dog and suffered a dog bite, you should contact an experienced attorney who understands both the legal issues associated with dog bite cases as well as the medical implications. Stephen Bilkis and Associates is experienced in handling personal injury cases stemming from dog bites as well as other types of personal injury cases. Contact us at 800.696.9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case.

Client Reviews
When my mom, who is suffering from dementia, faced a slip and fall personal injury lawsuit, I contacted Stephen Bilkis of the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates. Not only did he provide a strategy for defending the claim, he also advised me on steps to take to avoid future personal liability. Whether you are the defendant or plaintiff in an injury case, I highly recommend Mr. Bilkis. S.M.
From the very first phone call to Stephen Bilkis' office, the staff was extremely polite and helpful in assisting me. Mr. Bilkis was honest and upfront with me from the beginning in what he projected the outcome of my case would be; in the end we got better results than either of us anticipated. He was very genuine and compassionate in understanding my situation and how this legal matter could effect not only myself but my family as well. I highly recommend this law firm and will most definitely continue using them for any future legal needs. Jarrett
I had my first encounter with Mr. Stephen Bilkis three years ago over the phone. He and his staff have been nothing but courtesy and professional. Their hard work ended with a large six-figure settlement for my case. I would highly recommend you contact his office. I want to give a special THANK YOU to Ms. Tricia Krapf. She always made me feel like a priority and was always kind and professional over the phone and email. I highly recommend them to anyone in need of legal representation. Celesta