Dangerous Dogs: Knowing Whom You Should Contact
When you encounter a dog that shows signs of being dangerous, the first responsibility should be to protect yourself from injury. However, after you have taken all of the necessary precautions to protect yourself, the next step is to focus on how to effectively report the dog so that the police can take the necessary steps to solve the situation.
Assess The Situation
Determine whether it is necessary to contact emergency services. The dog will need to be loose or on the verge of getting loose. A dog that is simply unattended or barking should not be assumed to be a dangerous dog. Also, you cannot assume that a dog is dangerous based on its breed. Signs of a dog that is too aggressive include:
- Attacking or chasing domestic animals
- Aggressive lunges at people
You will need to use your own judgment. A small puppy might nip at you, but a dangerous dog will not only bite, but often attempt to shake its target. This type of bite will almost always require medical attention. If the dog exhibits signs of aggression, by contacting emergency services, not only will you summon authorities who can control the situation, but you will also create a paper trail that can assist a future victim in providing evidence that a dog was dangerous.
Contact Emergency Services If The Dog Is A Threat
Call emergency services or your local emergency number if you can do so safely and if the dog is an imminent threat. Explain what the dog is currently doing. Has it attacked someone? Is the dog on the loose and growling at passersby? This will help determine what emergency services will need to be dispatched. If someone was attacked, for example, there is a good chance that the individual will need medical assistance.
If the dog isn't an imminent threat, contact an animal control department if one is available in your community. They will be able to respond more rapidly to the threat. If there is no animal control department, contact an animal control shelter or humane society. However, in more rural areas, there may not be a nearby animal control shelter and you will instead need to contact a local sheriff. If you feel in danger, do not worry as much about whom you call. As long as you receive assistance as soon as possible, you will be more likely to be safe.
If you have been bitten by a dog, and have taken all of the actions above, you will have a stronger case. You should then consult with a dog bite attorney, like Trammell & Mills Law Firm LLC, regarding whether you should initiate a lawsuit for your medical bills and whether you should make a case to have the dog destroyed.