In a news release from State Farm yesterday in honor of Dog Bite Prevention week, the insurance company proclaimed that dog bite accident claims are on the rise throughout our state. According to State Farm’s amalgamated research, almost 5 million people are bitten or attacked by dogs every year across the United States. Drawing from State Farm’s research, dog bites are on a significant rise in Oregon. Our state ranked 15 for the most dog bite claims. The insurer handled 77 dog-bite claims in Oregon last year, up from 62 in 2011.
In addition to the number of claims, the cost associated with treating these injuries seems to be mounting as well. State Farm said that it spent $1.2 million helping Oregon customers recover from dog bites. This figure is nearly double what State Farm paid dog accident injury victims in 2008. Hilliard said there are a number of factors that contribute to the rise in expenses paid – additional claims, medical treatments and severity of the injuries are just a few.
“A dog’s tendency to bite depends on factors like heredity, obedience training, socialization and health,”said Brad Hilliard, State Farm spokesman in Salem. “There are good dogs and bad dogs within every breed, just as there can be responsible and irresponsible owners of each breed.” As a result, he said, “we do not track the type of breed for each claim.”
As the experienced dog bite and dog attack injury attorneys at Dwyer Williams Cherkoss know, any dog may attack when provoked. But dog bite injuries are preventable when appropriate steps are taken to keep everyone safe. These preventative measures include:
- NEVER leave a baby or small child alone with a dog, even if it is a family pet. Children are often bitten by a dog in their own household.
- Make sure your pet is socialized as a young puppy so it feels at ease around people and other animals.
- Never put your dog in a position where it feels threatened or teased.
- Walk and exercise your dog regularly to keep it healthy and provide mental stimulation.
- Use a leash in public to ensure you are able to control your dog.
- Regular veterinary visits are essential to regulating the health of your dog. A sick or injured dog is more likely to bite.
- Be alert. If someone approaches you and your dog while out on a walk, caution them to wait before petting the dog, giving your pet time to be comfortable with the stranger
If you or a loved one has been injured in an Oregon dog attack, call our caring and experienced dog bite injury attorneys today at 888-257-9023. We can help you!