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Cohen, Feeley, Altemose & Rambo personal injury workers' compensation

Hidden dangers on a dog walk

As spring approaches, dog owners may be more inspired to take Fido for a long walk in the warmer weather. For some dog owners who use retractable leashes, however, those walks could end in injury, expense and maybe even a lawsuit. 

Some dog trainers advise against using retractable leashes. That's because it's harder to control a dog at the end of a very long leash vs. a leash that is at most six feet long. If a dog becomes aggressive while on a fully spooled out retractable leash, the likelihood of injury can be greater than if the dog owner could easily pull the dog back in. But even for well-trained and well-behaved dogs, retractable leashes can cause serious injury.

The cord of the leash, for example, can cause burns and cuts and even amputations if it gets wrapped around some part of the body when a dog takes off running. This can happen even with leashes that are technically well-designed and come with warnings. Leashes that are not well-designed, however, have been known to break in various ways, causing eye injuries, broken teeth and other injuries. This can happen if the leash snaps and the cord, with or without the buckle attached, flies backwards and hits the dog owner in the face. If such an injury happens to you or someone you love, consider consulting with a lawyer who can investigate if the leash was designed to be safe and manufactured correctly.

Injuries from a faulty dog leash can be serious and present lifelong challenges. While retractable leashes are, in general, more dangerous than shorter flat leashes, don't assume that a leash accident was your fault. Depending on the safety of the leash involved, you may be entitled to compensation to help pay for your injuries and other expenses related to the accident.

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