Pit bulls and mixed breed dogs are the most likely to cause severe dog bites, according to a new study by researchers at Ohio State University's Wexler Medical Center. However, some pit bull rescues claim the study is limited and misleading.
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, almost 350,000 Americans were treated for dog-related injuries in hospital emergency rooms in 2017. Around 10,600 of those people were children ages 2 years old or younger. OSU researchers analyzed dog-bite data to determine which dog breeds presented the greatest risk of biting and causing serious injuries. They then used this information to create a "risk to own" chart for individuals considering getting a dog. They found that pit bulls and mixed breed dogs were most likely to bite and most likely to cause serious injuries when they do bite. However, they said that the dog breed was unavailable in approximately 60% of the cases they analyzed.
Pit bull rescue groups believe there are more problems with the study than just the lack of breed information. A representative for the Cincinnati Pit Crew noted that the study only included facial bites that were treated in emergency rooms, which ignores data on dog bites to other parts of the body that weren't treated in emergency rooms. As a result, the study's findings, which were published in a pediatric journal, could be inaccurate.
Someone who gets bitten by a dog could suffer severe injuries that require emergency intervention and reconstructive surgery. An attorney could review a victim's case and help collect medical records and other evidence supporting a personal injury claim. If the claim is successful, the victim could be awarded compensation for medical expenses and other related damages.