Dog Bite / Attack Injury Claims Guide – How Much Compensation Can I Claim?

By Joanne Jeffries. Last Updated 22nd June 2022. Welcome to our guide on dog bite claims and dog bite compensation. Below, we reveal answers to common questions about making a dog bite claim, such as ‘can you sue someone for a dog bite in the UK?’ ‘my dog bit another dog, what should I do in the UK?’ and explain what compensation for a dog bite you could receive, whether you’ve had to have minor dog bite treatment in the UK because of your dog bite injuries, or you’ve suffered serious injuries and have been left with a dog bite scar. If you don’t know what to do if you suffer a dog attack injury, this guide could be of use to you. it explains why you shouldn’t rely on a dog bite compensation calculator, or the average dog bite settlement in the UK when working out your own compensation.

Making a dog bite claim – why do dogs attack?

Britain is known for being a nation of dog lovers, with the People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals (P.D.S.A.) finding in 2020 that there are around 10.1 million of our four-legged friends being kept as pets across the country.

Most dogs are well cared for and have good temperments, making them wonderful companions for humans. However, dogs can become aggressive if they are mistreated or neglected. Or, they might have been encouraged by their owners to attack others. Plus, they might have not been kept under correct control or supervision.

Can you sue someone for a dog bite?

If a dog (or any other sort of animal including a human) has bitten you and the dog bite attack injury has broken the skin, then you should seek immediate medical treatment for your injury to prevent the transmission of infection. Dog ownership is regulated by the dangerous dogs act 1961, and if the dog is considered a dangerous breed, you could report it.

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Prevent a Dog Bite Attack Injury

Remember, part of being a good dog owner is taking responsibility for the way the animal behaves. This includes correct behaviour training, not encouraging your dog to be aggressive (for example, raising a dog to be a fighting dog or “status” dog), making sure the dog is kept under proper control when out in public (for example keeping it on a lead) and is correctly supervised around others.

Can you sue someone for a dog bite? Your questions answered

If a dog has bitten you, attacked you, if you have been bitten by a dog in the workplace or bitten by a dangerous dog and the dog owner or another party was to blame then this could cause permanent scarring and other injuries. You could claim personal injury compensation from them, to hold them accountable for their actions. Dog attack compensation settlements could be worth tens of thousands of pounds if your injuries are serious, so it’s well worth pursuing your dog bite claims. We would not advise you to use a compensation calculator to work out the value of your claim though. You might be wiser to ask a personal injury specialist.

Getting help with a dog bite claim

We are Accident Claims UK, a trusted solicitor’s firm and personal injury law advice service. We have an excellent track record of helping victims claiming for a dog attack win their compensation cases.

Call us today on 0800 073 8801 to enquire about claiming compensation payouts for a dog bite attack injury. One of our friendly advisors will be happy to speak to you, let you know what dog attack compensation amount you could claim and if you have a legitimate case, match you with a personal injury solicitor to fight your personal injury compensation claim for compensation relentlessly.

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A Guide To Dog Bite Or Attack Compensation Claims

As we have already stated, most dogs are good-natured and make loving pets. However, dog bites and dog attacks do occur and can lead to serious injuries. If a dog breaks the skin as it bites you, its teeth can transmit bacteria from its mouth and cause infections, so you must seek appropriate medical treatment straight away.

In some severe cases, a dog bite attack injury has resulted in the victim becoming severely mauled, or even killed. Even less serious dog bite injuries can cause visible scars or untold psychological damage. If you were injured due to a dog bite attack which wasn’t your fault, you could be owed potentially tens of thousands of pounds in compensation.

How long do I have to make a dog bite claim?

In Britain, there is a three-year time limit on making a personal injury claim. This means from the day you were injured, made ill or realised that you had been injured or made ill, you have three years in which to claim compensation.

Exceptions to this rule apply if you were claiming compensation for a child. This means that if you were bitten by a dog, or attacked by a dog in an accident that wasn’t your fault in the last two years, you could claim compensation.

Accident Claims Advice can help you claim the compensation that you are entitled to. Call us today for your free consultation, to be advised on the average payout for a dog bite in the UK and to be provided to accident claims solicitors to handle your dog bite claims, if you are due compensation for your injuries.

What Are Dog Attack Injuries?

If you need to claim dog bite compensation or dog attack compensation you can do so, providing that the accident was not your fault. Dogs, like people, are likely to defend themselves if they are threatened or in danger of being, so you cannot sue for a dog bite if you provoked, threatened or harmed the dog in any manner.

However, if the dog bit or attacked you because of negligence on the part of its owner or another party, you can compensation as a dog bite victim.

The Most Common Types Of Dog Bites

A dog bite attack injury could involve minor dog bites. These types of dog bites can be easily treated and shouldn’t cause ongoing medical problems. But they could still potentially lead to dog bite claims. And you should seek medical treatment in any such situation.

If you have only experienced a minor dog bite you could still be liable for personal injury compensation if it caused you to become injured. Contact Legal Expert to enquire about claiming for dog bite injuries. We recommend you report even minor dog bites to your local warden, as it may be a sign that the dog is becoming aggressive and may pose a more serious danger to others in the future. You should report any attack to the police that compromises your wellbeing.

Dog Bite Statistics In The UK

In 2019, the NHS published statistics of hospital admissions for dog bite injuries. Over a three-year period, around 23,000 people were admitted. These statistics reflect the steady increase of dog populations in the UK over the last 10 years. You can see a chart relating to this below.

dog bite compensation / dog bite claims

According to the P.D.S.A., there are 4 dog breeds banned in the UK: 

  1. Pit Bull Terrier
  2. Japanese Tosa
  3. Dogo Argentino
  4. Fila Brasileiro

If you suspect were bitten by any of these breeds, call the police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

What should you do if attacked or bitten by a dog?

The information below is legal advice. It goes without saying that you should seek the appropriate medical treatment immediately if you attacked, bitten, or in any way harmed by a dog. This is especially the case if you have serious injuries. If you or someone else is severely injured by the dog you should call an ambulance.

There are things which you can do at the scene of an accident, if bitten or attacked by a dog, which can help your case when you are claiming compensation for dog bite injuries further down the line.

Firstly photograph your dog bite attack injury, including the date stamp if you can. Note down all of the details you can observe about the injury you can at the time. It could be surprising what details you can forget later on. Talk to any witnesses and get their contact details too. They may be required to give evidence to support your claim if you sue for criminal injuries compensation in regards to your dog bite. If it is possible, exchange contact details with the dog’s owner as well. All of this information will help your solicitor collect usable evidence. This could support your personal injury claims case further down the line.

What Is The Dangerous Dog Act 1991?

The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 bans four breeds of dogs from being owned in the UK. This includes the Pit Bull Terrier, Japanese Tosa, Dogo Argentino and Fila Brasileiro. All of these dog breeds are fighting breeds with incredible jaw strength.

Dogfighting has been banned in this country for almost 200 years but, unfortunately, it still goes on. Not only are these dog fights incredibly cruel but the dogs are often abused and encouraged to be aggressive and vicious as part of their “training”. This is not just cruel towards the dogs, it also encourages aggression which means that they’re more likely to attack humans.

The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 bans the owning, sale, exchange and breeding of these dogs. Anyone who owns one has to have their dog assessed and the dog may be destroyed if it is not deemed safe.

Breed Specific Legislation, such as the rules of the Dangerous Dog Act, is a controversial subject within the dog-owning community. But it’s important to be aware of this prior to making any dog bite claims.

What Is The Law Regarding Dog Bites?

In the UK, dogs have to be registered and dog owners have a legal responsibility to keep their dog under control. If their dog attacks another person in an unprovoked attack, the owner is held responsible. In the event that the dog attacks an intruder, or is attacked by another dog and defends itself, then the owner is exempt from responsibility.

If you are the victim of a dog bite or attack then it is crucial that you hold the owner accountable. You could make a dog attack claim, as well as seeking an insurance payout for the dog bite. Claiming compensation as a dog bite attack injury victim is important for your own sake. Plus, it could ensure the law is upheld.

Claims for dog attacks at work

You can claim compensation for a dog bite you suffered at work. Under what circumstances might you suffer a dog bite at work? If you are a veterinary nurse or vet you may have been bitten by an aggressive dog. If you work in security, you may have also experienced a dog bite attack from a working security dog. In this case, you could claim dog bite compensation for an accident at work.

Dog Attack Compensation Claim If The Dog Is A Prohibited Breed

If you are bitten by one of the four breeds of dogs that are banned under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 that should increase your grounds for claiming for dog bite injuries as the owner has already broken the law. Trust Accident Claims advice to help you claim dog bite compensation in the UK. We have a successful track record of winning compensation claims like this and ensuring the victim receives the maximum amount of compensation possible.

If a dog attacks you, who do you make a claim against?

Dog bite claims could involve claiming criminal injuries compensation for the dog bite/attack. You would claim against the dog’s owner. This is especially so if it was the owner whose abusive or negligent behaviour caused the dog to become violent. You may also claim against your employer if you experienced a dog bite at work (for example if you work in veterinary medicine and your employer did not take proper precautions to protect you).

Can You Make A Dog Bite Compensation Claim For A Child Who Was A Dog Bite Victim

If your child has been attacked by a dog in an unprovoked attack, you could make a compensation claim on their behalf before they turn 18. If you do not, they will have 3 years to make a claim for themselves after their 18th birthday to claim for suffering a dog bite attack injury. You would have to act as a litigation friend when claiming for such child accident claims.

Can I Claim Compensation If I Experienced A Dog Bite Or Dog Attack Which Gave Me Tetanus?

The majority of dog bites can be treated easily. However, if you are bitten by a dog and it breaks the skin, you should seek immediate medical attention to ensure you do not experience an infection. A rare number of dog bites will result in the victim contracting tetanus. This is a serious illness which is caused by the dog’s saliva transmitting bacteria into the open wound. Symptoms of tetanus include:

  • Sweating.
  • A temperature of 38 degrees Celcius or above.
  • Rapid heartbeat.
  • Muscle spasms that make swallowing and breathing difficult.
  • Stiffness of the jaw.

If you experience any of these symptoms after a dog bite attack, seek the help of a doctor immediately.

If you have contracted tetanus from a dog bite, this should increase your chances of claiming compensation for a higher compensation amount. Please contact Accident Claims Advice, to enquire about claiming dog attack and bite compensation.

Can I Claim Dog Bite Compensation If I Was Attacked By A Stray Dog?

If a stray dog has bitten you it may be harder to claim personal injury compensation. If the dog’s owner can be identified then you can claim compensation payouts for dog bites from them. But be mindful of the circumstances before making dog bite claims.

Allowing the dog to stray is a form of negligence on the part of the owner of the dog, so this would support your claim for dog attack compensation. If the dog’s owner cannot be identified you may be able to claim dog attack compensation from your local council or the company that managed the grounds on which your dog was bitten, for allowing the dog to stray on those grounds.

Speak to Accident Claims Advice, for help on claiming compensation when the dog was stray.

Types Of Injuries From Dog Bites/Attacks

There are many types of injuries that can be the result of dog bites and dog attacks. Here are some of the most common injuries dog bites:

  • Bites: bites can cause varying degrees of injuries. As we have mentioned, if your skin is broken by a dog bite, the bacteria in the dog’s mouth can be transmitted to the open wound and cause infections. The NHS recommends that you seek immediate medical treatment if you are bitten by a dog and it breaks the skin. This could avoid the spread of infection.
  • Scars: A dog bite or scratch can cause scars, including damage to the facial tissue. In serious cases, the victim may require plastic surgery. This, of course, can affect the dog bite victim sense of self-esteem and cause psychological damage.
  • Broken bones or bone crush injuries: If you are attacked by a large dog, which pushes you to the ground you can break or fracture a bone upon impact with the ground.
  • Head or brain injuries: If the dog attack victim hits their head because the dog pushes them over, or the dog bites them on the head, this can cause brain injuries or head injuries.
  • Psychological damage: Being attacked by a dog can be a terrifying and traumatic experience. Victims can develop a fear of dogs or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The victim may need extensive psychological treatment as a result.
  • Unfortunately, some dog attacks and dog bite attacks result in fatalities. From 2014-2015 there were 21 fatalities from dog attacks. You could claim for wrongful death in such cases.

Contact us today for free legal advice on seeking compensation payouts for a dog bite attack injury.

My Dog Attacked Someone And I Do Not Have Pet Insurance

If you are a dog owner whose dog has bitten someone, you may have to pay compensation to the victim. If you do not have pet or other insurance, to pay the insurance payout for the dog bite, the courts may have to order you to pay the compensation for the dog bite yourself. You may only have to pay the cost of the victim’s medical expenses or fees, depending on the outcome of the court case.

Please contact us today for more information about insurance payouts for dog bites, if you do not have pet insurance and your pet has been involved in a dog bite attack.

Can I Claim Dog Attack Compensation On Behalf Of Someone Else?

Clients often ask us if they can claim dog attack compensation on behalf of a family member. You can claim compensation amount if your next of kin was killed in a dog attack, or is unable to claim for themselves due to their injuries (for example if the attack caused brain injury). If you call us, a sympathetic advisor will you through the process of doing this in preparation for any dog bite claims.

What Can You Claim For After A Personal Injury?

If you are claiming for dog bite injuries, you can claim for different injuries. This includes general damages where you claim dog bite attack compensation for the suffering and pain your injuries caused, the cost of medical care, additional travel or at-home care you had to undergo. You can also claim compensation for loss of income if you were left unable to work for a period of time due to your injuries.

Dog Bite Compensation Payouts For 2022

If you’ve been injured due to a dog bite, compensation may be awarded to you if the injury was sustained as a result of negligence. The portion of your settlement that is calculated to directly address the physical or psychological injury is known as general damages.

Because the value of dog bite claims can vary depending on a number of factors, legal professionals will often turn to helpful resources to assist them in their calculations regarding a general damages payment. For instance, they will address the medical evidence of the claimant.

Additionally, they will also make use of a publication called the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). We have included some JCG figures in the table below. They have been taken from the 2022 edition, which is the latest version of the publication. As you can see, each injury is assigned a range of figures. These figures have been based on past court cases.

You can use them to get an idea of how much your compensation for a dog bite may be worth. However, you will need to have your case assessed individually before you get an accurate valuation. You can do this by getting in touch with us or heading over to our compensation calculator.

Type of injuryCompensation bandingNotes
Mental and psychological anguishUp to £4,670Overall fear of death or the end of a persons life.
Severe psychiatric injuries£54,830 to £115,730There will be a poor future prognosis. Various factors will play into how this is calculated.
More moderately but still severe psychiatric injuries£19,070 to £54,830The anticipated future prognosis will be much better than the above category.
Fully moderate psychological injuries£5,860 to £19,070The anticipated future prognosis will be much better than the above category. There will be a good degree of recovery over the long term.
Milder psychological injuriesUp to £5,860Settlements will take into account the effect on activities such as sleep and how long this lasts.
Facial injuries including disfigurement – very severe£29,780 to £97,330There will be a large scale disfigurement and psychological injuries.
Facial injuries including disfigurement – less severe£17,960 to £48,420Less substantial than the category above.
Facial injuries including disfigurement –significant£9,110 to £30,090The worst impact could be reduced with surgery

No Win No Fee Dog Bite and Attack Claims

If you were attacked by a dog and experienced a dog bite at work, a dog bite in public, or experienced a dog bite in a private residence, which happened because the dog’s owner or your employer acted negligently, you could be entitled to claim dog attack and bite compensation via dog bite claims.

We understand that when you have gone through a traumatic experience, which may have been costly in terms of medical bills and caused you a loss of income. That’s why Accident Claims Advice offers you the option to make a no win no fee dog bite/attack compensation claim.

What is a no win no fee accident claim? This means that you will only pay if you win your dog attack and bite compensation claim, so your fee will come out of your compensation payout for your dog bite.

For many claimants, no win no fee is the less stressful option because you will only have to pay your solicitor’s fee if you win, so there’s no financial risk to you. Call us today to enquire about making a no win no fee claim.

Why Choose Us To Help You Claim For A Dog Bite or Attack?

Having a dog is a responsibility, not a right. If someone has been an irresponsible dog owner, which has led to you being hurt in an unprovoked dog attack, you should hold that person accountable by suing for dog bite compensation.

Trust a top personal injury solicitor from Accident Claims UK to help you in claiming for dog bite injuries. Many of our solicitors have years of experience practising personal injury law and can help you claim tens of thousands of pounds for your injuries.

Call us today for your free compensation claims consultation and if you have a legitimate claim, we will proceed with your case right away. Don’t let irresponsible dog owners get away with it, call Accident Claims UK to start your claim. We’re looking forward to hearing from you about your dog bite attack injury.

Useful Links Relating To Dog Bite Compensation

An NHS guide to dog bite injuries

An RSPCA guide to responsible dog ownership

A government guide to controlling your dog in public

Child Accident Claims

Wrongful Death Claim

If a dog attack resulted in the passing of a loved one, you might feel that you’d like more of an insight into seeking justice. Our guide to wrongful death could help. 

How Much Compensation Can I Claim for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?

The attack may have affected your mental health. If you’re suffering, read our guide to claiming compensation for PTSD.

How Much Compensation Can I Claim for a Leg Injury?

Did a dog bite lead to your leg injuries? Read our guide for advice. 

Dog Bite Claims, Dog Bite Attack Injury and Dog Bite Compensation FAQs

What is the average payout for a dog bite scar?

The average payout for a dog bite might not be applicable to you. That’s because a compensation award is calculated by how severe physical and psychological injuries are as well as how much economic damage was done. Speak to our team for a compensation estimate tailored to you.

Can I claim for a dog bite at work?

If a dog bit you at work due to your employer’s negligence, you could make a claim for a dog bite scar or other injury. 

Should I get a lawyer for a dog bite?

Yes, it is highly recommended to work with a personal injury solicitor for any dog bite claim.

How do you deal with a dog bite incident?

The most advisable reaction is to remain calm, treat the wound with warm water and soap, and to then immediately contact a doctor. Getting earlier treatment could prevent a dog bite scar.

Will my medical insurance cover a dog bite?

Usually, it is the homeowner’s insurance which covers any dog bite injuries.

Do dogs feel bad after they bite you?

Dogs can often express feelings of shock and sadness after biting someone.

Who is liable if a dog bites someone?

The owner of the dog has to accept responsibility if their dog bites someone.

Does house insurance cover dog attacks?

Your house insurance can cover dog attacks if you’re covered for third party liability.

Is a dog bite a personal injury claim?

In many cases, you could make a dog bite compensation claim against your employer, or a dog owner. However, some claims may need to be made through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority. They could fund a claim for criminal acts of violence that cause injuries. For example, if someone trains a dog to attack you, this could be considered a criminal case.

Claims through the CICA must, in general, be made within 2 years of the incident, and it must have been reported to the police. Such claims would be compensated for in accordance with the CICA tariff. The amount of compensation you could receive for such claims could differ from the amount you could receive for a personal injury claim. If you’re not sure whether your claim would be through the CICA or against another liable party, we could help. We’d be happy to help you work out the most appropriate route to compensation.

Can I claim for mental trauma?

You could suffer a psychological injury due to a dog bite or attack. If you do, this could affect not only your ability to cope with going near dogs, but it could also affect other parts of your life. For example, if you work with animals, you may feel unable to go back to working with them. You may have to have counselling, and you may lose sleep, and suffer anxiety. Such psychological injuries could lead to compensation.

How much compensation would I get for a dog bite – UK settlements

When it comes to the amount of compensation you could receive for your injuries, you might want to know what UK settlements have brought before for a dog bite injury or dog bite scar. Unfortunately, this would not usually give you an insight into how much you would receive for your injuries. Every dog bite compensation case is different. Courts and lawyers must assess the specific facts of the case before they arrive at a compensation value.

During the course of your claim, you would attend an independent medical examination. You would be examined by an independent medical professional. They would write a medical report which details the specifics of your injury, and their professional opinion on your prognosis. This could then be used to value your pain and suffering. You could also submit documentary evidence relating to costs incurred due to the injuries you’ve sustained. In addition, you could submit payslips to show loss of income.

My dog bit another dog, what should I do in the UK?

It’s a criminal offence if you allow your dog to be dangerously out of control in a public or private place or in you’re own home. For that reason, it is against the law for your dog to bite another dog.

If another dog owner or a member of the public is reasonably apprehensive that your dog may injure someone, you could be penalised.

Please note, this information is related to a dog bite in the UK. If you are based outside of the UK, it might be best to check local laws.

Could my dog be taken off me if someone makes a dog bite claim against me?

If dog bite injuries lead to the police being informed about a dangerous or out of control dog, the owner could face a fine, as well as having to pay dog bite compensation to the victim.

In addition, if the offence is serious you could be banned from keeping dogs in the future or even sent to prison. Your dog could be taken from you, and if the dog remains a danger to the public, could be put to sleep.

Can you sue someone for a dog bite?

If you can prove the owner was negligent, leading to dog bite injuries, you could make a dog bite claim against them.

You may have sustained a mild injury that required minor dog bite treatment in the UK. Or your dog bite injuries may have been more severe leading to permanent scarring. Either way, you may be able to seek compensation by making a dog bite claim.

Do I need a local lawyer to claim dog bite compensation?

It may come as a surprise to learn that your lawyer doesn’t have to be based locally to you. Location isn’t important if you want to claim for a dog bite scar. You could opt for a solicitor that is based anywhere in the UK for your claim. This means that you would have a larger choice of law firms and solicitors who are authorised by the regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. If you would like us to connect you with a solicitor that could help you with your claim, we will be happy to help. Please call our expert team for advice and support.

What to do if you suffer a dog attack injury?

If you suffer a dog attack injury, we would urge you to seek medical attention to ensure you receive the proper treatment and avoid complications.

It could also be wise to take photographs of the injury, as well as collect witness contact details.

If you would like free legal advice about claiming compensation for a dog bite, we could help you with this. Our team can be contacted at any time to provide a free eligibility check on your case and to give you guidance on any action you could take.

Could a postman claim compensation for a dog bite which happened at work?

If someone breached their duty of care towards you as a postman, leading to a dog bite, you could have the right to claim compensation. 

If you would like to speak to our team about claiming compensation for a dog bite as a postal worker, we would be happy to help you. We could provide a free eligibility check, and if we determine that you have a valid claim, we could provide you with a No Win No Fee solicitor to assist you in making a dog bite claim.

What’s the average dog bite settlement in the UK?

Knowing the average dog bite settlement in the UK, or using a dog bite compensation calculator wouldn’t necessarily give you an accurate idea of what you could receive in compensation for a dog bite. There are lots of factors unique to your case which would be factored in when calculating compensation. 

The severity of the initial injury, and any immediate pain and suffering you’ve experienced would be assessed. Solicitors could also look at the treatment you’ve needed to have, and whether there was psychological damage as well as physical damage. As well as this, when assessing a dog bite compensation claim, they would look at the financial impact. For example, you might have lost out on income because you needed time off work. Or, you might have incurred travel or medical costs. 

How long does it take to complete a dog bite compensation claim?

The time it takes to obtain compensation for a dog bite could depend on a number of factors. For example:

  • Whether the defendant admits liability
  • The complexity of your injuries
  • Whether further evidence is needed

Call our team to find out more.

Thank you for reading our guide to dog bite claims and dog bite compensation after a dog bite attack injury. Whether you’ve sustained a dog bite scar, or have had minor dog bite treatment in the UK, we could assist with dog bite claims.