A 4-year-old Bakersfield boy who was attacked by a dog in his driveway was saved in time by the family’s cat.
According to an ABC News report, the incident occurred when 4-year-old Jeremy was playing on his bicycle on his family’s driveway.
The entire incident, recorded by a security camera, shows the boy attacked viciously by his neighbor’s dog, an 8-month-old Labrador/chow mix. The dog is seen sneaking up from behind him, biting his leg, pushing him off the bike and dragging him on the driveway.
At this time, the family’s cat rushes the attacking dog and chases it away. The boy’s mother, Erica Triantafilo, came rushing to her son’s aid and took him inside the home. The boy suffered deep cuts on his leg, which needed a few stitches.
His parents say they are thankful that the situation did not get much worse and are grateful to their brave cat Tara who came to Jeremy’s rescue. But for that intervention, Jeremy could have been seriously injured. The dog belonged to a neighbor and will be euthanized after a 10-day quarantine, officials said. The neighbor was pulling their vehicle out of their gated driveway when the dog got out, the article states.
Children and Dog Attacks
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 4.5 million Americans suffer dog bites every year and 800,000 of those victims seek out medical attention.
Of those who are injured in dog bite incidents, 386,000 require emergency services and 16 are killed. Children are particularly more prone to dog bite injuries. Due to their height, children suffer the most dangerous injuries to their head and neck during dog attacks.
The rate of dog attack injuries is highest among children between 5 and 9.
Liability in Dog Bite Cases
Under California’s strict liability statute, dog owners can be held financially liable for injuries and damages their pets cause.
California’s Civil Code Section 3342 states: “The owner of any dog is liable for the damages suffered by any person who is bitten by the dog while in a public place or lawfully in a private place, including the property of the owner of the dog, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.”
Dog owners’ homeowner’s insurance policies will usually cover injuries and losses caused by their pets. Injured victims in such cases can seek compensation for damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, pain and suffering and emotional distress.
Injured dog bite victims would also be well advised to contact an experienced Fresno personal injury lawyer who will protect their rights, ensure they are fairly compensated and that the dog owner is held accountable.