Novato Dog Bite Lawyer


When a dog attack incident occurs, it can be a frightening experience. In January 2020, a man and his dog were attacked by two Pitbulls at the intersection of Chase and Plum streets in Novato. The man suffered scratches and bruises, while his dog suffered neck and chest injuries that required surgery.

When a dog attacks someone, the incident always leaves permanent damage beyond the individual's physical bite injuries. In most cases, the dog bite incident also takes an emotional toll. Whether the person is an adult or a child, they may experience intense anxiety, fear, and insecurity due to the attack.

If you or a family member has suffered injuries in a dog bite incident in Novato or elsewhere in Marin County, call our experienced California dog bite attorneys at (415) 521-2515 or (800) 404-5400 for a free, no-obligation consultation.

Dog Bite Statistics

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 4.5 million people in the United States are bitten each year, and over 800,000 are treated for dog bite injuries. Below are more dog bite facts:

  • Almost one in five people bitten by dogs require medical attention.
  • Children are the most common victims of dog bites.
  • Most children are bitten while interacting with familiar dogs.

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) states that:

  • California is one of the leading states for dog attacks.
  • California had the second most dog bite deaths.
  • Dog bite attacks have increased exponentially in California.
Common Injuries in Dog Attacks

A dog attack can be highly traumatic. Common injuries usually associated with a severe dog bite include:

Why Do Dogs Bite?

Except for rare occasions, dog bites don't usually come out of nowhere. There are several reasons a dog might feel biting is its best response to certain situations. Unfortunately, most people often miss the warning signs that a dog may attack. Most dogs try to communicate discomfort before biting by growling, barking, or snapping at the air. However, there are various reasons a dog might bite:

  • Fear: A dog might fear someone getting close to them or into their space.
  • Startled: A dog who is suddenly startled may be confused or disoriented.
  • Protecting: A dog might bite to protect valuable items such as toys or puppies.
  • Pain: Even the most tolerant dogs can bite when injured, in pain, or stressed out.
  • Frustration: A dog might bite when overwhelmed or trapped in an uncomfortable situation.
  • Play: Light biting or playing is a natural way dogs play with each other and their toys.
Treatment for Dog Bites

Before treating a dog bite injury, make sure the dog has been restrained. The safety of all involved, including the injured person, the rescuer, and the dog, is the first priority.

  • Use a clean, dry towel to apply pressure to the bite.
  • Clean the wound thoroughly with warm water and soap.
  • Cover the injury with a clean, dry dressing.

If the bite has punctured your skin, go see a doctor within 24 hours for appropriate medical care.

Dog Bite Compensation in California

Injured individuals often spend thousands of dollars on medical procedures and physical therapy to return to normalcy. If you were attacked by a dog, you should not have to pay for your medical expenses and other damages. The owner of the dog should be held financially liable. You can seek compensation for damages such as:

Strict Liability Statute for Dog Bites

California has a strict liability statute when it comes to dog bites. This means dog owners are responsible for their pets' actions, even if the dogs have not shown any signs of aggression.

However, there are very few exceptions to the law:

  • if the dog was provoked by cruelty or abuse
  • if someone was trespassing on the owner's property
  • if someone is committing a crime

In most dog bite cases, pet owners can be held financially responsible and receive a citation or face other penalties related to the animal attack.

Why Should You Hire a Dog Bite Attorney?

In most California dog bite cases, the injured person will try to file a claim themselves or decide not to take legal action. However, hiring an attorney is almost always the best choice to make. Dog bite attorneys are familiar with California laws regarding dog attacks and will fight on your behalf against the owner of the animal. An experienced California dog bite lawyer knows what it takes to win and can provide expert guidance.

Our Novato dog attack attorneys are trained negotiators skilled at obtaining the maximum compensation for our clients. We are also qualified trial lawyers who are not afraid to take your case to court if the insurance company offers a lowball settlement.

Watch the YouTube video below to learn more about why hiring a lawyer for your dog bite claim is essential.

Contact Our Dog Bite Lawyers in Novato, CA 

Dog bites can go deeper than scars and broken bones. Emotional trauma can last a lifetime. If you have been bitten or attacked by an animal, call our Novato dog bite attorneys to determine if you are entitled to pursue compensation for your damages. To speak with our top-rated California injury lawyers about your legal options, please call (415) 521-2515 or (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly advice.

Our legal team has handled numerous dog attack cases with notable verdicts and settlements since 1982. We have the experience and knowledge to provide top-notch representation for our clients.

We are members of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and the National Association of Distinguished Counsel.

See our client reviews on AvvoGoogle, and Yelp.

Photo by Crazypitbull on Pixabay

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Client Reviews
"Me and my wife; had a car accident. We were amazed how easy, professional, friendly attorney Ed Smith is along with his staff. Everybody is amazing. Thank you so much, we are very impressed!" Alex & Dinah M.
"Ed Smith and his office team took on a difficult personal injury case on my behalf and for the passenger in my car. Ed is a top- notch attorney. His staff couldn't have been more helpful and kind. No need to look elsewhere. I give Ed Smith my highest recommendation." Beverly
"Ed and Robert have been taking great care of my husband and I for the past 5+ years. They are always there when you have a problem and a quick resolution! Even when the issues have nothing to do with them. They are willing to help ease the pain off your shoulders. They are as good as it gets! Thank you again for everything." Annie T.
"Very professional. Great team, staff and service all around. Mr Smith was very honest, straight forward with his advice. He gives the word "attorney" an honest reputation. I will seek his council anytime, and would recommend him at the drop of a dime." Jeremy M.
"I would highly recommend Ed Smith to any friends or family in need of a personal injury attorney. Ed, and his staff, are very caring on top of being very experienced in this field. The staff always keeps you informed of the status of your case and they are always easy to reach by phone." Shannon D.
"Edward Smith law offices provide competent, thorough, and personable help for victims of personal injury. When you first meet the staff you know you contacted the right office. This law office treats clients like people. I recommend this office to anyone seeking representation regarding personal injury." David M.