A numbness or tingling feeling after a dog bite can be an indication of severe tissue damage, infection, or other complications. You should get a medical evaluation right away.
Do Not Delay in Getting Professional Medical Treatment After a Dog Bite
Even if the dog bite looks minor, you should always have a medical professional examine the dog bite. Here are some of the primary reasons to get prompt medical attention for any dog bite:
Many dog bites are to the hands. Sometimes these hand bites develop into dog bite infections. The high rate of hand bite infections is because of the complex anatomy of the hand with the location of bones, joints, and tendons. Because bites are puncture wounds, you can develop a deeper-seated infection that can spread throughout your body and cause sepsis, meningitis, or other life-threatening diseases. Dog saliva contains many types of bacteria and other organisms.
Potential nerve damage, muscle, or other soft tissue damage can occur from a dog bite. If left untreated, the wound can result in permanent impairment of the affected body part.
The possibility of rabies or other canine diseases transmitted by saliva or blood also exists. Dogs are the transmitters of more than 95 percent of the reported rabies cases to humans worldwide. You can also get tetanus from a dog bite. Aside from the normal first aid, you may need a booster tetanus shot after a dog bite if your last tetanus shot was not within the last ten years — five years if the wound is deep or dirty.
Additional Steps to Take After a Dog Bite
You should report the dog bite to the proper authorities to document your potential legal claim. The medical records will provide proof of the date of the injury and that your injury was from a dog bite. These records could be valuable evidence in your case.
Find out if the dog was up-to-date on its rabies and other shots. Let your doctor know right away if the dog was not current on its shots, as you might have to undergo rabies injections.
How to Protect Your Legal Claim After a Dog Bite
Get on board with a personal injury lawyer early in the process. Do not agree to a settlement with the dog owner’s insurance company. Do not sign any papers for the insurance company or the dog owner without having your lawyer review them. You might be signing away your right to compensation.
Keep a journal of the pain and other symptoms you experience from the injury. In your journal, be sure to include:
- Dates of doctor appointments
- Dates and details of medical procedures
- How you felt during and after medical procedures
- Names of people who witnessed the events in your journal
- Places where things happened
Why You Should Not Settle Your Claim Too Early
Do not settle your claim too early. If you have not achieved complete healing yet, you might develop an infection or other complications that would require additional medical treatment and increase your medical bills.
If you are experiencing a numbness or tingling feeling after a dog bite, you may have damage to:
- Other soft tissue
You might not know for weeks or months if you will heal to the point of full restoration regarding your strength, flexibility, range of motion, and other functions.
If you settle your claim too quickly and later discover that you will have impairment in the damaged area, you cannot go back and get more money from the insurance company. In the fine print of the papers you sign when you settle a legal claim is a waiver of your right to seek more compensation from that party for this injury, no matter what happens down the road.