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What kinds of infections are common from dog bites?

If you are attacked by a dog, it's likely that the owner will be held responsible. New Jersey is a strict liability state, which means it's the owner's responsibility to keep his or her dogs under control.

After a bite, you may have many medical concerns including worrying about tetanus or rabies. Both can be transmitted by dogs without proper vaccines. When you are bit, going to the doctor or hospital is not only wise but imperative to prevent infection. You may need a series of rabies shots or a tetanus shot to prevent serious infections that may be fatal if left untreated.

Dog bites account for over 90 percent of all animal bites in the United States. After these bites, individuals suffer from damaged blood vessels, nerves, muscles and bones. The way the wounds are made make them prone to infection, particularly when punctures are present. Punctures quickly seal over as the skin heals, but that can trap dangerous bacteria inside the wound.

After a bite, a medical team will not only cleanse the wound but prepare to repair any serious damage. Surgery can be necessary in some cases where the skin has been badly damaged or where bones or muscles have been broken or torn. The crushing power of a dog's jaw has the potential to cause serious injuries under the skin, so x-rays, CT scans and MRIs may be needed.

All the medical care that goes into treating this kind of wound can become expensive, so the person who owns the dog should be held liable. With the right support, you can make sure you don't end up paying for your treatment.

Source: MedicineNet, "Dog Bite Treatment," accessed Aug. 24, 2016

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