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What to do when an animal attacks you

Interacting with animals can be fun, exciting or even relaxing. Like many people, you may enjoy being around animals of all kinds, from your own pets to wild animals at the zoo. But what happens when one of these animals attacks you?

If you were in a public place or other location you had the right to be in (such as a friend's house for lunch), and an animal under someone's care attacks you, you can hold the person legally responsible. You can sue the owner, caretaker or establishment to pay for the medical bills of your injury. These are the steps to take.

Treat the wound

First, you need to treat the wound to prevent infection. If it is minor, you can do your own first aid and then go see a doctor as soon as possible to check on it. If it is severe, or you are not sure how serious it is, go to an emergency room right away. Keep records of all your doctor or hospital visits, along with photos and medical reports of your injury.

Make a police report

Notify the police to make a formal report to have on file. This record will be helpful in your legal case and may also encourage the owner to cooperate because the police are involved.

Gather evidence

In addition to photos of the wound and other damage, you should also take photos of the animal and the location where the attack happened. Ask the owner for details about the animal and its health care, including vaccinations. Write down the contact information of the caretaker or establishment and ask about insurance coverage. You can even talk to other people and get their information if they saw the attack. Get whatever details you can to prove what happened.

File a lawsuit

File a lawsuit against the responsible party and take all your evidence to court. With the proper preparation and legal help, you should receive monetary awards to cover the costs of your injury.

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