How bad is the bite?

On Behalf of | Nov 15, 2019 | personal injury

After a dog bites a person, at the minimum, the owner should have its behavior assessed and take it to a professional in New York for training so there will be no repeat incident. The Association of Professional Dog Trainers has an official Dog Bite Scale that identifies what level of training a dog needs and its likelihood of success based on the seriousness of the bite.

Here is what you need to know about dog rehabilitation after a bite.

Level 1

Actually, a Level 1 incident is not even a bite. When a dog’s behavior is obnoxious or aggressive, the owner may want to consider training to make sure that the animal never bites someone.

Level 2

The dog makes contact with someone’s skin, but there is no puncture wound in a Level 2 bite. However, there may be nicks or scratches due to the dog’s or the victim’s movement while the teeth are in contact with the skin.

Basic training is almost always successful at preventing any further behavioral issues.

Level 3

If the dog bears down and punctures the skin, the outlook for training is not nearly as good. A Level 3 bite may include one to four punctures, and the depth of the wounds cannot be more than half the length of the dog’s canine teeth.

Training involves rigorous bite-inhibition exercises, and there is a danger to the trainer. Without owner compliance, the rehabilitation is not likely to be successful.

Level 4

The puncture wounds are deeper than Level 3 bites, and the victim may have deep bruising, which can tell the trainer how long the dog bore down and held on. There may also be lacerations indicating the dog shook its head while holding on.

A dog that attacks this viciously is extremely dangerous even to professional trainers. Bite inhibition training is not likely to be successful, and it is not even recommended. If a trainer does agree to take on a Level 4-attack dog, he or she should only do so after the owner signs a form promising full compliance and accepting liability. The dog must be kept away from people.

Levels 5 and 6

If there are multiple Level 4 bites or the dog has attacked on more than one occasion, or if the dog kills the victim, professionals recommend euthanasia rather than the only other safe alternative, which is complete solitary confinement for the dog.

This general information should not be interpreted as legal advice.