When you are attacked by a dog, you have a lot to be concerned about: How are you going to pay your medical bills? Will you need to take time off from your job to recover? If so, how will you provide for your family while you are unable to work? Will your injuries lead to permanent disabilities?
But, do you also need to be concerned rabies? Unfortunately, you might.
Rabies and Domestic Animals
While wild animals are far more likely than domesticated animals to have rabies, the fact that so few people have with wild animals means that most cases of rabies result from domestic animal encounters. Although there is an animal vaccine for rabies (as well as a human vaccine), not all pet owners get their animals vaccinated, and rabies can spread between wild and domestic animals. This is known as “spillover” rabies; and, as noted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it presents one of the greatest risks for human infection.
Rabies can be spread to humans through the saliva of an infected animal. As a result, a dog bite is not only a way that people can become infected with rabies, but dog bites are actually a leading cause of human rabies infections in and throughout the United States.
How Dog Owners Can (and Should) Help Prevent the Spread of Rabies
Rabies in humans is preventable, and the CDC provides four recommendations for dog owners to help prevent the spread of rabies:
- Make sure their dogs are up-to-date on their rabies vaccinations;
- Keep their dogs under supervision at all times;
- Get their dogs spayed or neutered to reduce the number of unwanted pets, which may be less likely to receive vaccinations; and
- Report any encounters between their dogs and any stray or wild animals.
Are You Concerned Rabies as a Result of Being Bitten By a Dog?
If you have been bitten by a dog and you know its owner, you should ask for a copy of the dog’s vaccination records to see if it is current on its rabies vaccinations. In any case, you should also seek prompt medical attention, as you may need prompt treatment not only for rabies but for other injuries resulting from the dog bite, as well.
The following are the initial symptoms of rabies, as published by the CDC:
- General weakness or discomfort
- Pricking or itching sensations at the site of the bite
Diagnosing rabies requires multiple tests, and treatment and recovery can be both time-consuming and expensive. As a result, if you have been diagnosed with rabies following a dog bite, it is critically important to speak with an attorney your legal rights.
Call Me, Brian D. Guralnick
If you or someone you love has been critically injured or fallen ill as a result of a dog attack, you may be entitled to significant financial compensation. To learn more your rights in a free and confidential consultation, call the Palm Beach County law offices of Brian D. Guralnick Injury Lawyers at 561.202.MORE(6673) today.
Disclaimer: The information in this blog is not intended, and must not be taken, as legal advice on any particular set of facts or circumstances. If you need advice on specific legal issues, please consult with a licensed Personal Injury attorney.