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Runners Injured By Dogs in Louisville

Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC’s team of dog bite lawyers represents runners injured by dog bites throughout Louisville. We understand the significant impact of these incidents and will guide you through the legal process, offering guidance and support. Contact us today for a free consultation.

When Do You Need a Lawyer?

If a dog bites you when you’re out for a run in Louisville, how serious it is will decide what you need to do. For small bites, you might manage with quick medical care. But for more serious bites or traumatic incidents, you may need to think about talking to our lawyers. Here’s what we can do for you:

  • Explain your rights and what happens next.
  • Collect important evidence, like medical records and information about the dog’s owner.
  • Make a strong case for you and ask the dog owner’s insurance for a settlement offer.
  • Keep you updated on what’s happening and any offers they make.

Most of all, our approach is built around making things easier for you and your family. A dog bite can be challenging, but you do have options. Our team can help you make the most of your legal rights.

Can You Strengthen Your Dog Bite Claim?

Anytime you get bitten by a dog, it’s incredibly unfortunate. But it’s even more problematic if you’re out for a run at the time. This scenario is actually quite common because dogs often see running as a threat or react to it with their chase instincts. That said, you still have the ability to file an injury claim against the dog’s owner because Kentucky law holds them “strictly liable” for any harm caused by their dog, including bites during a run.

But you still have to present an effective case. This means taking steps to strengthen your claim. Here’s how you can do that:

  • Get to a safe spot away from the dog – Move away from the dog to prevent further bites and assess the severity of the wound. If it’s minor, you may be able to handle it yourself. Note details about the dog and its owner if possible. Remembering the house number or area where you were running can be helpful for reporting later.
  • Get medical care – Regardless of the severity, seek medical help. Some bites may need stitches or a tetanus shot. A doctor can also check for infections and provide treatment records. You might also want to wash the bite with soap and water to reduce infection risk. Apply antiseptic and cover the wound with a clean bandage.
  • Report the bite to Louisville Animal Control – Report the bite to Louisville Metro Animal Services. They have dispatchers available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They’ll gather information about the dog and its owner. If the bite is serious, you may also have to report it to the police. 
  • Document the bite incident – Take photos of the bite, the dog, and the surroundings. This information is going to be important when you file your claim.

These steps are important in any dog bite situation, but also aren’t necessarily easy to do. If you’re out on a run, you’re probably not expecting to get bit by a dog. Even still, you have to do what you can to get the information you need for the legal process. These steps form the foundation of your claim.

How Can You Recover Damages After a Dog Bite in Louisville?

Just because you’re running at the time of your dog bite doesn’t change your legal rights or options. Again, the law makes dog owners in Louisville “strictly liable” for any damage caused by their dog. This takes care of a huge part of an injury claim–telling you who you’ll be filing against and who will have to pay for your damages. 

Still, you have to actually file a claim to recover these damages. And from there, you have to prove your case–you can’t simply file a claim and expect to recover everything that you’re owed. You do this by filing either an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit. This allows you to recover things like:

  • Medical expenses – These include the cost of your treatment, ongoing care, and rehab.
  • Pain and suffering – This category covers any physical pain and mental stress caused by the dog bite.
  • Emotional distress – Similarly, these damages are for the emotional impact of the incident, like anxiety or trauma.
  • Lost wages – These damages cover any lost income or wages from missed work because of your injuries. It can also cover the loss of earning potential.
  • Property damage – If the dog damaged your property during the incident, like tearing your clothes or phone, you can get repair or replacement costs for this damage.
  • Loss of quality of life – Another category of damages include loss of quality of life, built around the way you can no longer enjoy things after the accident.

Remember, you have one year from the date of the injury to file your claim. Miss this deadline, and you won’t even be able to file your claim, thus missing out on this important financial support.

Can You Reduce the Chances of Being Bitten While Running?

Obviously, the best way to avoid the challenges that come with a dog bite is to not be bitten at all. But that’s not always possible, especially if you’re on a run around Cherokee Park or Toonerville Trolley Park in Old Louisville. So then, it’s important to be prepared and have a plan if you encounter dogs. While you can’t always prevent a dog bite, you can take these steps to reduce the chances of one:

  • Stay alert – If you come across a dog, stay calm and avoid direct eye contact, as some dogs may interpret staring as a threat.

  • Don’t run toward the dog – Running towards the dog might trigger its instinct to chase. Instead, slowly move away while maintaining a safe distance.

  • Stop moving – If a dog approaches you, stop running, as running can activate a dog’s prey drive and increase the likelihood of a chase.

  • Think about your route – Avoid routes with known risks of encountering aggressive or unrestrained dogs. Opt for paths with fewer loose dogs.

  • Protect yourself – If a dog becomes aggressive and you can’t avoid a bite, protect your face, neck, and chest.

  • Report aggressive or unleashed dogs – Report consistently aggressive or unrestrained dogs to local authorities or animal control.

Remember, every dog is different, and these tips may not work in every situation. The key is to stay aware of your surroundings and take necessary precautions to minimize the risk of a dog bite while running.

Seek Legal Help After a Dog Bite in Louisville

Getting bitten by a dog in Louisville is always challenging, especially if it’s because the dog isn’t leashed or trained properly. It can have lasting effects on you and your family, especially if it happens while you’re out running. Our team of dog bite lawyers at Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC is here to help. Contact us today for a free consultation to start the process of getting better.

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