How To Report a Dog Bite in California

Dog Bites & Injuries | May 13, 2024

Sustaining a dog bite injury can be a scary experience, and the aftermath can be incredibly confusing. After seeking immediate medical care, one of the first things dog by victims should do is report the incident to the proper authorities. The process of reporting a dog bite typically depends on the jurisdiction where the incident occurred.

Why Reporting a Dog Bite is Important

While we know dog bite victims are often on the fence about reporting the incident to proper authorities, it is important to do so. Not only will it be important for any documentation you need for an injury claim on your own behalf, but reporting an incident can help increase public safety by alerting authorities to possible nuisance dogs. Reporting a dog bit helps with:

  • Public safety. Reporting ensures that the authorities can investigate whether the dog poses a future threat to others.
  • Legal documentation. Having an official report is essential if you decide to pursue legal action against the dog owner.
  • Medical attention. The report can help identify whether the dog has been vaccinated against rabies or other diseases that might affect your health.

Steps to Report a Dog Bite in Sacramento

The steps for filing a dog bite actually differ from place to place around the state. In Sacramento, the Department of Animal Care and Regulation oversees dog bite incidents:


  1. Seek immediate medical attention. Get prompt treatment to prevent infection or other health complications.
  2. Gather information. Collect details about the dog and owner, including the dog’s vaccination history, if available. Note the exact time and location of the incident.
  3. Contact animal control. Call the Sacramento County 311 Connect system (916-875-4311) to report the bite. They will require specific information to investigate further.
  4. Follow-up. Animal control may contact you for additional details or clarification. Cooperate fully to help them assess the risk posed by the dog.

You can seek help from a Sacramento dog bite injury lawyer if you have any questions about how to proceed with an injury claim in that particular area.

Steps to Report a Dog Bite in Roseville

Roseville has a local Animal Control Unit for dog bites and other animal-related incidents:

  1. Medical attention and documentation. Obtain immediate medical care and document your injuries with photographs and medical records.
  2. Collect information. Take notes about the dog and its owner. If possible, obtain witness contact details.
  3. Report to animal control. Contact the Roseville Police Department’s Animal Control Unit at 916-774-5090 or fill out an online form on their website.
  4. Follow-up. Be prepared to give a formal statement if required, and keep records of all communication.

You can reach out to a dog bite injury lawyer in Roseville for help if you have any questions about your particular claim in this area.

Reporting Outside Sacramento or Roseville

In other California jurisdictions, the process is similar. Victims should contact their local animal control department or health services to report the bite and provide as much information as possible. In emergency situations or if the dog is actively threatening others, contact local law enforcement.