Dog Bite Injuries in Boca Raton and Elsewhere Costing Billions!

Dog bite injury claims in Boca Raton and elsewhere cost insurance companies nationwide nearly $500 million in 2011. That’s a near $70 million increase from the year before. According to Yahoo News, officials with State Farm Insurance are trying to pinpoint the cause of the increase.

State Farm, one of the country’s largest home insurers, reports that it saw an increase of about $10 million and about 500 claims from just 2010 to 2011.

Our injury attorneys in Boca Raton understand that about 20 people die every year because of dog bite attacks. About 800,000 people seek medical attention for these types of injuries. Nearly 5 million people are bitten every year by a dog, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). While everyone is at risk for these accidents, children and U.S. Postal Service workers face some of the highest risks.

Nationwide, about 6,000 postal service workers were attacked by dogs each of the last two years.

For that reason, the U.S. Postal Service is teaming up with organizations across the country to push National Dog Bite Awareness Week. This campaign is held during the third full week in May every year. During this time, advocates distribute informational packets, statistics and tips to help to prevent these kinds of accident and to raise awareness about their likelihood.

Tips to prevent dog bites:

-Talk with a professional before bringing a dog into your home to figure out which breeds of dogs are the safest.

-Keep dogs with a history of aggression out of households with children.

-Spend time with a dog before bringing it home.

-Consider spaying or neutering your dog before bringing it home to reduce aggressive tendencies.

-Never leave children along with a dog.

-Avoid playing aggressively with your dog.

-Teach the dog submissive behaviors.

Who is most at risk?:

-Children between the ages of 5- and 9-years old. They’re about 9 times more likely to be involved although recent research shows that the rate of dog-bite related injuries among children seems to be decreasing.

-Adult males. Men are typically more likely than women to be bitten by a dog.

-People with dogs in their home. As the number of dogs in the home increases so does the likelihood of being bitten. Individuals without dogs in their home have the lowest risks.

In the state of Florida, we have statutory strict liability. This means that the victim of a dog bite can recover damages pursuant to the dog bite statute and all of the causes of action discussed, namely negligence, negligence per se, scienter, and intentional tort.