Dog bites hurt. Not only do they hurt, they can cause serious muscle and deep tissue injuries, as well as infections that can result in serious health problems for years. If you have been bitten by a dog, you must take the incident seriously. Follow these steps:
If it was a stray dog, write down the breed, size, color and distinctive markings. Call the local police immediately and report the incident.
Talk to witnesses and get their version of the incident and their contact names, addresses and phone numbers.
If it was a pet, ask for all contact information from the owner. Write down the dog's name, breed, distinctive markings.
DO NOT engage in negotiations with the owner for an off-the-books settlement. You will not know the severity of the injuries until you see a doctor and receive proper treatment. Once money changes hands, your claim for a serious injury will lose merit with the courts.
Report the incident to the police. If it was a friend's or relative's dog, the police will advise you how to handle the legal issues.
Talk to an experienced personal injury attorney. Let your lawyer handle the details with the insurance company. In many cases, the pet owner's homeowner's insurance will pay the settlement, with very little financial impact on the owner.