A nine year old Orange County Florida boy was recently bit by a pit bull and bull dog mix dog in the Southchase neighborhood. The boy had been playing with some darts when one fell into the neighbor’s yard. The boy opened the gate where the dog was kept and then got scared and started to run. The dog then took chase and bit the boy in the face. The boy was later treated at Arnold Palmer Children’s Hospital in Orlando, Florida. Arnold Palmer Children’s Hospital and other children’s hospitals in Florida treat thousands of child dog bite injuries every year. Due to complications that may result from dog bites in the form of excessive bleeding, infection, and scarring, it is important for parents and caregivers to get immediate medical attention for dog bite injuries to Florida children. You can read more about this dog bite story at Orange County, Florida Nine Year Old Bitten in Face By Dog.
The above dog bite incident illustrates a couple key points when evaluating a dog bite incident. It is important for children to remain calm when faced with a situation with a dog. Personally, I was bitten in a leg by a neighbor’s German Shepherd when I got scared and started to run. Running was a big mistake on my part but I was just a kid and did not know any better. Was the boy welcomed at the neighbor’s house or was he trespassing? Did the neighbor have Beware of Dog signs posted?
In Florida, a dog owner is responsible for injuries caused by a dog bite even if the dog had not bitten a person in the past. There are some exceptions for trespassers. The nine year boy above may have been considered a trespasser if he had not been given permission to open the gate or to step on the property of the neighbor. If the neighbor had given express or implied permission for the child to be on the property then the child may not be considered to be a trespasser.