Articles Posted in Dog Bites

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Sometimes a very unfortunate event affects those who cannot advocate for themselves because they are under the age of 18. If your child is injured on a playground, in a car accident, in a bicycle accident, at a store or in any way that results in a physical injury to your child and is someone else’s fault, you as their parent have the ability to bring a lawsuit on their behalf.

Children have the same access to remedies for harm to them as adults do and as their parents, you also have a right to recover medical expenses you incur while tending to the needs of your injured child.

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Children have special rules in court. Some of these exceptions are:

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pilPersonal injury law is utilized when someone causes physical harm to another and the injured wants to be made whole or compensated for that injury. The experienced attorneys at Friedland Law Group provide free consultations to those who believe they may have a case and are seeking more information on the options available to them. Examples of situations when people normally seek personal injury lawyers in Miami, Coral Gables, and the surrounding areas include but are not limited to:

Auto accidents,

Trip and falls/slip and fall: There are many dangerous conditions like torn carpeting, changes in flooring, poor lighting, narrow stairs, or a wet floor can cause someone to slip and be injured. Same goes if someone trips on a broken or cracked public sidewalks, or falls down a flight of stairs. In addition, a slip and fall case might arise when someone slips or falls outdoors because of rain, ice, snow or a hidden hazard, such as a pothole in the ground. In any event, the plaintiff must have sustained some kind of injury, however minor, in order to collect, http://injury.findlaw.com/torts-and-personal-injuries/slip-and-fall-accidents-overview.html

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The Center for Disease Control recently disclosed that more than 4.7 million dog bites occur annually in the United States. While this information may be frightening, even more concerning is the actuality that the average cost of treatment for these attacks in 2015 rose to $37,214.00 per attack and unfortunately some of these attacks, primarily to younger children, end with a fatality. Fortunately for injured parties, Florida is a statutory strict liability state, meaning, as long as the injured was lawfully on the premises where the bite or attack occurred and the injured did not provoke the dog, the owner of the animal is liable for all costs or damages associated with the treatment and damage resulting from the injury.

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Some victims do not file suit against the dog owner because they fear they may be partially or “comparatively” at fault. Florida has special rules for Ft. Lauderdale dog bite victims regarding when someone can be held “comparatively negligent” or partially at fault. For example, if the victim is a child under six years old, it has been decided in Florida courts that the child is incapable of being partially at fault. Swindell v. Hellkamp, 242 So.2d 708 (Fla. 1970). The Florida courts have also held that anyone who is injured by a dog bite would need to have acted so unreasonably that it was blatant that the injured was attempting to provoke the animal to attack and mistake by the injured is not enough. In view of F.S. §§ 767.01 and 767.04, F.S.A, See Also Smith v. Allison, So.2d (Fla. Court of Appeal, 1976).

There are many statutes and a lot of case law that must be evaluated when navigating a dog bite incident and everyone will be highly fact intensive. Having a lawyer familiar with this area of law and experienced in handling Miami dog bite cases can make all the difference in the outcome of your personal injury claim.

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pit-bull-pitbull_1.jpg A three-year-old girl is currently recovering in a local Palm Beach hospital after she was bitten in the face by a pit bull on Wednesday. Rusty, the dog who bit the young girl, is in the custody of Animal Care and Control. Animal control Capt. David Walesky stated that Rusty, who is about six years old, was not up to date on his rabies vaccinations, so he is currently undergoing a ten-day quarantine to determine whether he has symptoms of the disease. According to Walesky, it is unlikely that a domestic dog like Rusty would have rabies.

Animal control is conducting an investigation into what prompted Rusty to bite the little girl. This investigation should be finished by the time the quarantine is complete. Animal control will then determine if Rusty falls into the “dangerous dog” category. Walesky stated that “the dog has been very friendly with everyone else so we don’t know why this little girl was bit. We have to look at exactly what happened.”

It was around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday evening when the little girl and her friend were riding their bicycles in the East Highland Pines Drive neighborhood, which is off of Northlake Boulevard. The girls saw Rusty tethered to the back of his owner’s truck on his owner’s property. At some point, the owner walked inside his home, and the three-year-old girl walked onto the man’s property towards the dog. For reasons yet unknown, the dog then bit the girl in the face. She sustained mostly soft tissue injuries, including lacerations and puncture wounds. Palm Beach Gardens Fire Rescue crews arrived on scene and transported the girl to St. Mary’s Medical Center. The girl remains in stable condition.

FHP: Palm Beach Gardens girl, 3, bitten in face by pit bull, www.palmbeachpost.com October 10, 2013

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pit+bull+generic+1.jpg A pit bull attacked a thirteen-month-old baby Wednesday morning in Dania Beach. The baby was inside the family home located at 4841 SW 44th Avenue when the pit bull, which was owned by the victim’s mother, started to act erratically and attacked the baby. Gina Carter, a Broward Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman said family members rushed to pull the dog off the baby and called local authorities. Broward Sheriff’s Fire Rescue responded to the scene and transported the injured baby to Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood. The baby’s name and gender are still unknown. Carter stated that the injuries sustained by the baby were “serious.”

In the hours following the incident, the neighborhood surrounding the home was somber and quiet. One of the victim’s cousins, who was outside the family home, refused to give his name or make any statement about the attack. The family identified the animal that attacked the baby as a male pit bull. The dog was taken into custody by animal control following the incident. According to Lisa Mendheim, public education coordinator at the Broward County Animal Control and Adoption, the victim’s mother requested that the dog be euthanized following the attack. The mother was cited for failing to have proper identification tags for the dog and for not getting the dog vaccinated for rabies. Mendheim said animal control will wait ten days before euthanizing the pit bull in order to determine if the dog was infected and if he spread the disease to others. Mendheim said it is unlikely that the pit bull contracted rabies and spread it to others because he was a family pet. Mendheim was unsure if the family had other pets.

Commissioners tabled a proposal to outlaw new pit bull ownership in Broward County in February after dozens of county residents spoke out against the proposal. Last year, Miami-Dade residents voted to maintain a 23-year-old ban on pit bull ownership. According to county records, between June 1, 2012 and June 30, 2013, the Broward County Sheriff’s Office received nearly two-hundred-fifty calls related to injuries suffered due to animal bites. Of those reported injuries, seventeen were pit bull attacks, six were Unks attacks, and three were Rottweiler attacks. The overwhelming majority of the incidents–over one-hundred-fifty of the calls–were reports of attacks by an unidentified breed.

Pit bull attacks 13-month-old baby in Dania Beach, www.miamiherald.com July 3, 2013

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2856236_orig.jpg A twenty-seven-year-old woman is recovering in Daytona Beach after she was attacked by a group of dogs while walking with her young daughter in Flagler County. Flagler County Sheriff’s deputies stated that Brandy Bookamer suffered serious injuries from the attack that occurred around 8 p.m. Sunday evening. Her six-year-old daughter did not suffer any injuries in the incident.

When help arrived on scene, Bookamer was barely moving. The Daytona Beach News Journal reports that she had sustained puncture wounds and scratches all over her body. Bob Weber, Flagler County Sheriff’s Lt., stated that there were five dogs involved in the attack and that all were pit bulls. The dogs were taken away by Flagler County Animal Control. There is no news of further investigations or any information about the owner of the dogs that has been released at this time.

Woman mauled by 5 dogs in north Fla., www.palmbeachpost.com May 6, 2013

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brindle bulldog.jpg A seven-year-old boy was pronounced dead one week after being attacked by a neighbor’s bulldogs while riding his bicycle. The Bay County Sheriff’s Office informed local media that Tyler Jett was pronounced dead at a Pensacola hospital Sunday afternoon. The cause of death was a punctured carotid artery.

Last Tuesday, April 2, the young boy was riding his bicycle in his neighborhood after school when two dogs, one an Alapaha blood bulldog and the other a brindle bulldog, attacked him. The two bulldogs belonged to Edward Daniels Jr. Jett’s family members rushed to his aid and chased the bulldogs back to Daniels’ residence, but it was unfortunately too late, for the young boy had already suffered what turned out to be a fatal injury. Daniels faces a number of charges, including drug charges, manslaughter, and tampering with evidence.

Panhandle boy dies after attack by bulldogs, www.miamiherald.com April 08, 2013

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Pit Bull.jpg A young Kentucky boy had his nose reattached this week after he was mauled in a pit bull attack. Ten-year-old Matthew Weaver was visiting a friend’s home and playing in the yard with two others and the dog, before he was attacked. The play made the dog rowdy, so the dog’s owner brought the children and the dog into the home. While sitting on the couch next to the dog, Matthew was staring at the animal, when the pit bull lunged at him, bit off his nose and swallowed it. Matthew suffered other small wounds, including a split lip and a small puncture wound on his forehead.

Matthew was taken to Kosair Children’s Hospital for surgery, while the dog, which had no prior history of violence, was euthanized. Matthew’s nose was recovered from the dog’s stomach and doctors were able to reattach it. Matthew’s great uncle stated that the reattached nose “looks as good as you can possibly imagine after something like that.” Doctors anticipate that the reattachment surgery will be a success, but must wait a few days to be sure. Police stated that Matthew is handling the attack as best as possible and is recovering well at the Children’s Hospital.

Ky. boy recovering after pit bull bites off nose, www.palmbeachpost.com January 11, 2013

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efrem-townsjpg-2047c23cb976d127.jpg Dirty Dozens Brass Band trumpeter Efrem Towns was attacked by a fellow band member’s dog last week and has been forced to miss several shows. Towns knocked on the door of fellow Dirty Dozens Brass Band member Roger Lewis’s hotel room and when Lewis opened the door, the dog attached Towns. “I don’t know if it was a dog, wolverine, bear, mongoose or what. I just knew something had me,” Towns said. The dogs owner was in another room, but came over during the attack and along with Lewis, was able to subdue the animal.

Towns was taken to Atlanta’s Grady Hospital and was given 30 stitches to his groin area. He is expected to see a urologist this week. “I’m basically immobilized – it’s hard getting around. I’m kind of miserable,” he said. Towns will miss all of the bands gigs through December 28, 2012 and even then, he is not sure if he will be able to perform that show. He does believe he will still be able to practice while injured. Towns and his wife own five dogs of their own and Towns said he has always been a dog lover. After the accident, he stated, “I’m a dog person. And even though I got bit, I hope they don’t put that dog to sleep.”

Dog bite sidelines ‘Dirty Dozen’ trumpeter Towns, www.miamiherald.com November 24, 2012.

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1nzxwy.St.56.jpeg One of the things many love about Miami Beach is the canine friendly atmosphere of Lincoln Road. Many outdoor cafes and restaurants allow their patrons to bring their dogs to sit with them on the patio while they enjoy their meals. However, this common practice is coming under fire after a mastiff mauled a Van Dyke Café waitress over Labor Day weekend. The waitress, Amy Calandrella, was waiting on a customer seated in the outdoor section when she bent down to give the dog a bowl of water. As she bent down, the dog, a cane corso breed, bit her in the face. Paramedics took Calandrella to Mount Sinai Medical Center, where she received more than 300 stitches. She then underwent more than seven hours of surgery to repair the damage inflicted by the dog.

No charges were filed against the owner of the dog, Teri Guttman Valdes, and the dog remains in the owner’s care. The attack has prompted many to speak out about the Van Dyke Café’s dog policy, including one who witnessed the attack. He stated, “There’s too many people and there’s too many dogs over there. I think it’s a recipe for disaster.” According to another witness, Valdes and a teenager arrived, both holding a leash for their dog. Upon their arrival, two smaller dogs were barking, so Valdes and the girl took their dogs to a corner table. When the witness’s girlfriend asked if she could pet the mastiff, she was told the dog “was not at all friendly.” When the waitress arrived with a bowl of water, Valdes told her to place the bowl in front of the mastiff. As Calandrella was bending down, without warning, “the black dog launched itself at her face.” Another waitress working at the time, who doesn’t believe Calandrella did anything to startle the dog, described the bite as “vicious.”

While the police were called, they are unable to do anything because dogs are allowed on Lincoln Road and labeled the attacked as “non-criminal.” However, many feel that Valdes should be held criminally liable because she knew her dog was dangerous and did nothing to warn the waitress. Conversely, animal rights activists think the opposition is overreacting and dog bites rarely happen on Lincoln Road. However, the head of Miami Coalition Against Breed Specific Legislation states that many dogs are often running around unleashed on Lincoln Road and “people have got to stop thinking that dogs are not dogs.” Laurie Hoffman, associate executive director of the Humane Society of Greater Miami, stated that both dog owners and the public needs to be aware that dogs “can and will bite” and need to take proper precautions. Calandrella has filed a worker’s compensation claim with the Van Dyke Café to pay for her injuries. The owner of the café says she’s been “doing remarkably well” in her recovery.

Van Dyke Café waitress mauled by dog on Lincoln Road, www.miamiherald.com September 17, 2012.

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