Clearwater MN, Dog Bite Lawyers

Matthew Nelson
Home » Clearwater MN, Dog Bite Lawyers

“For more than 40 years, our attorneys have been fighting for the rights of our clients. We have taken on the large insurance companies and have recovered millions of dollars in compensation for accident victims.”

Clearwater MN, Dog Bite LawyersDog bites can have a devastating impact, leading to serious physical injuries and emotional trauma. As victims grapple with pain, medical expenses, and potential loss of income, it’s vital to have legal experts.

Nelson Personal Injury, LLC, is a team of a dedicated dog bite lawyers serving the Clearwater, Minnesota area who understand the complexities of Minnesota’s strict liability dog bite laws. We focus our entire practice on handling personal injury claims on behalf of injured persons and their families, including dog bites.  We, advocate for their rights, and ensure they receive the compensation they deserve for their injuries.

With our comprehensive knowledge and unwavering commitment, we aim to alleviate the burdens associated with dog bite incidents and the resulting injuries, allowing victims to focus solely on their recovery. Trust Nelson Personal Injury, LLC, for reliable and compassionate legal support in your time of need.

Minnesota Laws For Dog Bite Injuries

Minnesota has a specific statute that covers dog bites and other injuries caused by a dogs. Under Minnesota Statute 347.22, a dog owner is automatically liable for damages when their dog, without provocation, attacks or injures another person. The injured party does not need to prove negligence on the dog owner’’s part.

This statute makes Minnesota a “strict liability” state regarding dog bites, meaning that dog owners are responsible for injuries their dog causes, regardless of whether they knew the dog was dangerous or whether or not they acted negligently.

Call us today at  320-216-7651 or contact us online using our free and secure submission form. We are available 24/7 to assist you and offer FREE initial consultations.

However, to be eligible for a claim under this statute, the injured person must have been lawfully where the bite occurred and must not have provoked the dog. The dog owner can raise these defenses to dog bite claims, and they are a complete defense to such claims.

Common Injuries from Dog Bites

Dog bites can lead to various types of injuries, ranging from mild to severe. Common injuries from dog bites include the following:

Puncture Wounds

Often caused by a dog’s sharp teeth penetrating the skin, puncture wounds may appear minor initially but carry a high risk of infection due to bacteria introduced deep into the tissue. Depending on the severity, they require medical attention to clean, disinfect, and possibly stitch.  Puncture wounds can also lead to nerve damage if the bite hits or severs a nerve..


These are deep cuts or tears in the skin caused by a dog’s bite. They can damage nerves, muscles, and tendons, requiring stitches or surgical repair. Scar formation is common, and it can be cosmetically concerning on the face or other visible areas.

Crush Injuries

When a dog bites, it doesn’t just puncture the skin but often clamps down, leading to crushing injuries. This can damage underlying muscles, bones, and connective tissues, requiring intensive medical intervention and possibly resulting in long-term impairment.


In severe cases, a dog’s bite force can fracture bones, especially in children without fully developed bones. Fractures can lead to immobility, require surgical treatment, and require lengthy recovery.


Severe bites, particularly on visible areas like the face, can lead to permanent disfigurement. This can necessitate reconstructive surgeries and may have significant psychological impacts, affecting a person’s self-esteem and social interactions.


Bites can introduce harmful bacteria, leading to infections like tetanus or even rabies if the dog is not vaccinated. These conditions can be life-threatening and require immediate medical attention.

Emotional Trauma

Dog bites can cause significant psychological distress. Victims may develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), experiencing flashbacks, nightmares, or severe anxiety. Mental health support, including therapy or counseling, may be necessary for recovery.

Why Dog Bites Happen

Dog bites can occur for a variety of reasons. Some of the most common reasons include the following:

  • Aggressive Nature: Certain breeds of dogs, or individual dogs that have been mistreated, may have an aggressive temperament. This can lead to unpredictable behavior, including unprovoked bites or attacks.
  • Injured: Dogs in pain due to an injury can lash out and bite in response to their discomfort. Even the most well-behaved dog may act out if it’s hurting.
  • Threatened: Dogs might bite if they perceive a threat to themselves or their home or family. This could be due to a sudden move, an unfamiliar person, or an intrusive action that the dog interprets as hostile.
  • Provoked: Dogs may react defensively if they are taunted or provoked. Playful actions that humans deem harmless may be perceived as threats by the dog, leading to a defensive bite.
  • Fear: Fear can be a major trigger for dogs to bite. If a dog is in a situation where it feels scared and can’t escape, it may resort to biting as a fear response.
  • Protect its Territory: Dogs are territorial animals that may bite to protect what they consider their territory. This could include their home, yard, or favorite human.
  • Sick: Illness can change a dog’s behavior dramatically. Dogs suffering from conditions that cause discomfort or alter their mental state can become irritable or anxious, which may result in a bite.

Proving Liability in Dog Bite Cases

In Minnesota, because of the strict liability statute, the injured party doesn’t have to prove the dog owner was negligent or knew the dog was dangerous. However, they must show they were legally in the place where the incident happened and did not provoke the dog.  If any question on liability arises, especially if the provocation defense is raised, witness testimony will be crucial in combatting the defenses.

Compensation for Dog Bite Victims

Dog bite victims in Minnesota can seek compensation for their injuries and damages that were proximately caused by the attack or bite. These may include the following:

  • Medical Expenses: Compensation for medical expenses covers costs incurred for immediate and ongoing medical care following a dog bite. This can include hospital bills, doctor visits, medications, surgeries, and physical therapy costs.
  • Lost Wages: If a dog bite injury prevents you from working, you may be compensated for lost wages. This covers the income you would have earned during your recovery period and may also include loss of future earning capacity if the injury is debilitating.
  • Property Damage: Compensation for property damage is intended to reimburse victims for any personal property damaged during the incident, such as clothing or accessories.
  • Pain and Suffering: This is compensation for the physical pain and discomfort endured due to the dog bite. It considers the severity of the injury, the level of pain, and the duration of recovery.
  • Emotional Distress: Emotional distress compensation recognizes the psychological impact of the dog bite. This can include anxiety, depression, or PTSD symptoms a victim may suffer from following the traumatic incident.
  • Permanent Disability or Disfigurement: If a dog bite results in permanent disability or disfigurement, compensation is typically higher. This considers the ongoing impact on a victim’s quality of life and the potential need for long-term care or adjustments to living conditions.

Punitive damages may also be awarded if the dog owner’s behavior is particularly egregious.

The Importance of Hiring a Dog Bite Attorney

Handling a dog bite case can be complex, given the emotional and physical trauma involved, as well as the intricacies of the Minnesota dog bite law. An experienced dog bite lawyer can guide victims through the legal process, ensuring their rights are protected and helping them pursue maximum compensation.

At Nelson Personal Injury, LLC, our attorneys deeply understand Minnesota’s dog bite laws and have successfully represented numerous dog bite victims. We know how traumatic such incidents can be and work relentlessly to secure justice for our clients.

Our team will conduct a thorough investigation, gather all necessary evidence, negotiate with insurance companies, and, if needed, represent you in court. We operate on a contingency fee basis, meaning you won’t pay us anything unless we win your case. With Nelson Personal Injury, LLC, you’ll get the dedicated and empathetic legal support you deserve.

If you or a loved one has been a victim of a dog bite in Clearwater, Minnesota, or surrounding areas, don’t hesitate to contact us. Let us fight for your rights while you focus on your recovery.

Call us today at  320-216-7651 or contact us online using our free and secure submission form. We are available 24/7 to assist you and offer FREE initial consultations.

Case Results


Contact Us For A Free Consultation

Top-Rated Minnesota Injury Attorneys
Your Case is Our Priority