A dog attack can result in serious physical injuries to the victim. In addition, many dog bite victims suffer substantial emotional and psychological setbacks. If you or a person close to you was seriously injured in a dog attack, you should be cognizant of and make sure to treat the psychological trauma as well as the physical.
Although a dog attack may happen to anyone, children suffer more from these incidents than adults. Getting help fast is vital to recovering from the attack. For proper healing, you should obtain physical treatment as well as psychological counseling.
Common Disorders After a Dog Bite
Not all dog bite victims exhibit the same symptoms. However, many victims do suffer from posttraumatic stress disorder. This condition reveals itself in a number of ways including insomnia, nightmares and flashbacks.
Sometimes, a child may not report a dog attack to her parents. However, you may notice telltale signs in your child’s behavior. These include emotional withdrawal, anti-social behavior and fear of walking alone.
Victims may suffer from anxiety, fear, depression, irritability, and irrational thoughts. Others may have problems concentrating while at work or in school. All of these symptoms can cause serious issues if not properly addressed.
Proper Action After an Attack
After a dog attack, the victim should get immediate medical attention and care. This reduces the risk of disease. Similarly, proper care prevents bacterial infection to the wound.
Along with obtaining medical attention, the victim should consider legal redress. You should call an experienced dog bite lawyer immediately after the attack. In most jurisdictions, including California, the dog’s owner is liable for injuries inflicted by his pet.
If the victim is a child, talk to her immediately to determine the extent of any emotional trauma and to get a clear picture of the circumstances surrounding the attack. Most children feel comfortable enough to explain the matter to a parent. If the child is not able to explain the situation, let a professional counselor talk to the victim.
Professional Counseling to Eradicate Emotional Injury
Start by having your pediatrician assess the child’s emotional well-being. Your pediatrician may refer you to a psychiatrist or psychologist if he or she believes that it will help. Parents, other family members and professionals should talk about the issue casually and try to avoid raising alarms when discussing it with the child.
More importantly, do not blame the victim for the attack. Even when you know the child provoked the dog, don’t accuse her. Instead, let her know that not all dogs are violent.
If it is appropriate, you should contact an experienced lawyer to help you get compensation for your child’s physical and emotional injuries. In Los Angeles and Southern California, the attorneys at Sheridan & Rund can help.