Too many dog owners fail to educate themselves about the particular lifestyles their pets will require in order to be healthy and friendly. For example, if a dog whose breed is known for an active lifestyle is chained to an anchor in a yard, then there is a good chance that the animal will develop aggressive tendencies. Dog owners can also neglect to properly socialize their pets, and unfortunately, serious dog bites often result.
In fact, federal statistics indicate that roughly 4.5 million individuals suffer dog bites each year in the United States. California law provides that dog owners can be held accountable for damages if their pets injure other people, and victims of dog bites have the right to seek compensation for medical bills and other costs resulting from the injury.
These issues may come up after a 4-year-old boy was attacked by a dog in Arizona. The pit-bull mix was reportedly chained to a stake in a yard, and the child, who was under the supervision of a babysitter, is believed to have stepped into the radius of the chain.
A county report says that the dog knocked the child down and attacked his face. As of March 12, the little boy was still in a hospital and awaiting reconstructive surgery. His injuries are such that he has to breathe and receive nourishment through tubes.
A friend of the boy’s family said that his mother, who is a single parent, was forced to leave her job in order to care for her son.
It remains to be seen whether the mother and child will get the financial support they need to cover the mounting medical costs.
Source: USA Today, “Mauling of boy spurs debate over pit bull’s fate,” Michelle Ye Hee Lee, March 12, 2014