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The dangerous side effects of an animal bite

Many of the physical injuries associated with an animal bite are obvious, such as bleeding and scarring. At Beebe and O’Neil, we know that there are a number of other damages that victims of an animal attack can suffer. If you have experienced a bite, odds are you could be encountering deeper physical effects as well as psychological damage.

Physically, a bite can pierce and tear skin. In some cases, a powerful bite from an animal can even crush someone’s bones. Aside from blood loss and scarring, there is also the concern that someone may experience nerve damage and a loss of motor function. Stitching, surgeries and other procedures are often used to treat bites.

According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, bites – especially those from a dog – carry with them a risk for infection. A victim could be exposed to rabies or tetanus, which may be managed with an antibiotic. The AAFP reports that people with certain medical conditions could be more likely to develop an infection.

It is important that you remain aware of the potential psychological side effects of an animal attack. A report published in Contemporary Pediatrics notes that victims often experience emotional damage as well as fear, which can last a lifetime. Children who fall prey to an event like a dog bite are especially susceptible to developing posttraumatic stress disorder. Experts recommend looking for the following signs that suggest a victim has developed PTSD: 

  •        Irritability
  •        Decreased performance at either school or work
  •        Excessive anxiety
  •        A change in appetite
  •        Trouble sleeping
  •        Other behavioral problems

Fortunately, Connecticut law enables residents to hold the owner of the animal accountable for damages. For more information on this topic, please visit our page regarding personal injury claims.

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