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Party-goers beware: Animal bites increase during the holidays

It is logical to assume that more road traffic during the holiday season in Wisconsin may lead to an increase in motor vehicle accidents. Less obvious, however, is the fact that the number of animal bites suffered by travelers and party guests also rises during the holidays. Such incidents range from minor to tragic, and dog owners, as well as party-goers, will want to take every precaution to keep themselves and others safe.

One of the reasons there appears to be an increase in animal attacks during the holidays is more people tend to be around during parties. A dog who is used to a calmer atmosphere may become nervous and growl or bite if it feels threatened in any way. Loud arguments and other noises, children who pull tails or any sight or sound out of the ordinary may place those present at risk for an attack.

That said, pet owners hosting parties are responsible for the safety of their guests. It is crucial that a dog owner pay close attention to any signs of unrest that may suggest an attack is about to occur. Dogs often tuck their tails between their legs, place their ears in pinned back positions or crouch when walking if they are scared or stressed. 

When animal bites cause injuries to others, victims may have need of medical attention. Severe injuries often require plastic surgery or other operations to achieve full recoveries. This type of care is quite expensive and those afflicted may be unprepared to meet such costs. Under the circumstances, a recovering victim in Wisconsin -- which provides for strict liability when it comes to dog bites -- may file a personal injury claim in a civil court to seek compensation for damages; monies awarded in a successful claim can then be used to offset expenses associated with one's injuries.

Source: mercurynews.com, "Beware of dog bites around the holidays", Tracy Seipel, Nov. 24, 2016

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