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Types of Dog Bite Injuries and Infections

Posted on in Personal Injury

Illinois injury lawyerDogs are commonly called man’s best friend--and for good reason. More than 36 percent of American households own at least one dog. Dogs have even been proven to decrease stress, get us moving more often and are great playmates for children--but they can also be dangerous. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), more than 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each day, with nearly 800,000 people needing medical attention. Children are most susceptible to dog bites--nearly half of all dog bites that occur happen to children, especially children under the age of 14.

Injuries caused by dog bites can range from mild to severe and may leave lasting damage if the injury was bad enough. It is important to understand that any dog can bite--it does not matter what breed or how big the dog is, there is always a risk of being bitten. Understanding the injuries they cause can help you keep yourself and your loved ones safe around these lovable companions.

Types of Dog Bite Injuries

When a dog bites you, it can be a scary experience, especially if the dog was unprovoked and acting aggressively. Possible injuries from a dog bite can include:

  • Puncture wounds, lacerations or tears of the skin;
  • Skin abrasions;
  • Bruising;
  • Bleeding;
  • Soft tissue damage, including damage to the skin, muscles, tendons, blood vessels, and nerves;
  • Infection; and
  • Permanent scarring or disfigurement.

If the skin was broken when you were bitten, there is a possibility that you could contract an infection from the dog. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 60 different types of bacteria have been found in dogs’ mouths but only a few of them can make you sick. Possible infections from dog bites are:

  • Rabies: One of the most serious infections a person can get from a dog bite is rabies and though it is rare, it is a dangerous disease. Rabies is a virus that affects the brain and is almost always fatal once symptoms appear. While rabies is deadly, it can be prevented by vaccinating dogs. It is important that you seek medical attention to determine if rabies therapy is necessary.
  • Tetanus: This type of bacteria is found almost everywhere in the environment, often in soil, dust, and manure. A tetanus infection can cause muscle stiffness, seizures, fever, and sweating, but if you are up to date with your vaccinations booster shots, you have a very slim chance of contracting tetanus.
  • MRSA: MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) is a staph infection that is resistant to certain types of antibiotics. Dogs and other animals can carry MRSA without showing symptoms, but when humans contract the disease, it can cause deep-rooted skin infections that resemble swollen, painful red bumps. MRSA can also cause infection in the bones, joints, bloodstream, heart, and lungs of victims.
  • Pasteurella: According to the CDC, Pasteurella is a bacteria that is found in over half of infected dog bite wounds. This bacteria can cause a skin infection that can be red, swollen, tender and painful. The disease can also cause infections of the joins, bones or tendons.
  • Capnocytophaga: This type of bacteria lives in the mouths of dogs and cats, but do not make them sick. When this bacteria is transmitted to humans, it can make them very ill. Capnocytophaga infections can cause blisters around the wound, redness, pus, swelling, fever, vomiting and joint pain.

Contact a Park Ridge Dog Bite Injury Attorney

Though dogs make great companions, they also pose a risk to people, especially children. Not only can they cause pain and trauma, they can cause serious infections. If you or your child has suffered injuries related to a dog bite in Illinois, you need the help of a Park Ridge dog bite injury attorney. Contact the Quinn Law Group, LLC to discuss your options and receive the compensation you deserve. Call 847-232-7180 to schedule a consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.cdc.gov/features/dog-bite-prevention/index.html

https://www.medicinenet.com/dog_bite_treatment/article.htm#when_should_i_call_the_doctor_for_a_dog_bite

 

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