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A dog bite can cause serious health consequences

| May 10, 2021 | Dog Bites/Attacks |

Any instance in which a dog bites someone can be very traumatic. In fact, you may find yourself so traumatized by such an incident that you need to receive counseling to cope with it.

There are other physical injuries that dog bites can cause that few people know about, though. One of the worst of these is amputation.

Serious symptoms after a dog bite

Some dogs (as well as cats) carry a bacteria called capnocytophaga in their mouths that they can transmit when they bite.

While you should receive medical attention immediately following any bite out of an abundance of caution, you should definitely do so if your wound shows any signs of infection or you start to experience the following symptoms, including:

  • Redness, swelling, draining or blisters around your wound site
  • Stomach pain, vomiting or diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Joint or muscle pain
  • Fever

While many of these symptoms manifest themselves within a few hours of the bite occurring, some may take a few weeks to appear.

What are the long-term implications associated with capnocytophaga exposure?

Anyone exposed to capnocytophaga may be at an increased risk for kidney failure or heart attack. This bacteria can cause someone to experience an onset of gangrene, resulting in the need for an immediate amputation of their infected toes, fingers or limbs.

At least 30% of patients who receive gangrene diagnoses die. These deaths can occur within one to three days if sepsis sets in.

Owners have a responsibility for their dogs’ actions

Dogs don’t generally bite unless they feel threatened or they’re sick. It’s a dog owner’s responsibility to take care of their pet.

Medical bills can get very expensive if you suffer serious health issues from a bite. An attorney can advise you on how Texas law allows you to recover compensation for your expenses and damages.