£9k compensation for nerve injury from dog attack
Compensation of £9,100 was awarded in 2008 to a 60 year-old woman who sustained nerve damage to her right hand following an attack by a Rottweiler.
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The claimant, aged 57 at the time at which the incident took place, was a housewife.
She fell victim to the sudden erratic behaviour of her neighbour's dog which bit her hand with sufficient force so as to cause her to fall to the floor.
The dog continued to latch on to her right hand, and the claimant had to repeatedly strike the Rottweiler with her left hand in order to free herself from its grip.
She was immediately taken to a hospital and treated for significant wounds on her palm and wrist. It was decided that surgery was necessary to minimise any long-term damage, which kept her in the hospital for a short period.
The injury required consistent monitoring and attention over the subsequent weeks and months. The wounds, which were a number of centimetres in diameter in places, had to be regularly dressed to ensure that infection was avoided.
The scarring left by the injury was a source of great embarrassment for the claimant, given its prevalence in size and colour across her hand. This embarrassment caused her to cover up the scarring with clothing.
She had also sustained severe and permanent nerve damage to the affected hand, which resulted in pain, reduced mobility, muscle deterioration, and loss of feeling in two fingers.
Despite agreeing to on-going physiotherapy, the symptoms remained consistent and affected her performance of daily tasks within the house, such as preparing meals. She was unable to use to her hand for the purpose of maintaining personal hygiene and well-being, including brushing her hair.
The nerve damage was so substantial that the claimant was still unable to clench her hand together at the time of the award.
The matter progressed to a Court hearing.
The claimant was successful before the court, and was awarded damages totalling £9,100. Out of the sum awarded, £9,000 constituted general damages for pain, suffering and loss of amenity.
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Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher
About the author
Gaynor Haliday is an experienced legal researcher and published author. She has had numerous articles published in the press and is a legal industry commentator.