If your dog bites someone who invades your property or your home, you will not be held liable. If they act in a friendly, docile manner, you are praised for having raised them so well. By: Caitlin UltimoPublished: November 9, 2015. This does not mean you need to admit fault. A dog can only be labeled as dangerous or a nuisance if it actually hurts someone. This is a question I hear on a daily basis in my practice. What happens, if, after I tell the child he bites, if they pet him and he does bite and hurt the kid? The child’s parents could have sued for damages, and law enforcement could have chosen to euthanize Pebbles as a dangerous dog. If you can provide proof of a current rabies vaccine, you will save the victim having to endure treatment for rabies, and may reduce the amount of time your dog is held in quarantine. Will there be legal ramifications? Never leave young children or babies alone with a dog for any reason. However, that does not excuse the behavior, and the situation will have to be handled. Bisnar warns that if the bite is serious, the victim may report your dog to animal services. “Should this happen, be sure to cooperate with the investigation,” he says. It is absolutely essential to work on training and socialization with your dog as soon as possible after the bite. This simply may not be an argument that is not worth having. Dogs who are in a fearful situation may bite whoever approaches them. Instead, act responsibly and communicate with the victim. Offer to take the person to the hospital and to pay for the victim’s medical bills. When the dog stops paying attention to you, slowly back away. You may or may not be legally ordered to cover the victim's medical expenses. Depending on the situation and your dog's history, it is possible for your dog to be designated a ". One day, during a picnic at a local park, Pebbles was dozing on a blanket when a small child who had wandered away from his family ran up to him from behind and grabbed his fur. Consequently, if your dog acts like a watchdog and bites someone who does not have a legitimate reason to be on your property, you will generally not be held liable. Depending on the state where you live, laws vary on how dog bites are handled. Most dogs bite people they know. So it's important to ensure that your dog is kept under control at all times and in all places. Evict Them With These Flea Treatments for the Home. Dogs may bite in defense of themselves, their territory, or a member of their pack. “You have to be on notice that your dog might have a propensity to bite people before you are liable for the damages caused by that dog’s bite,” he says. The child was not seriously injured, and the parents understood the circumstances of the bite. If a dog bite pierces a person’s skin, bacteria from the animal’s mouth can get into the body, which can cause an infection. If this happens, you should contact an attorney familiar with dog bite criminal laws. If your dog has bitten someone and broken skin, the attending physician is obligated to report the dog bite to the local animal control agency in most municipalities. You will need to show proof of your dog's. Crucially, it is also important to understand that your dog does not even have to bite – if someone just feels threatened by the behaviour of your dog, you could be prosecuted under the DDA. Previous to amendments to the DDA, hundreds of postal and delivery workers were subject to dog bites per year with no way of pursuing compensation or redress from owners. On the other hand, if you have been injured in a dog attack, you have rights. Also, you could be held legally responsible and face criminal charges. If you suspect your pet is sick, call your vet immediately. He tends to after the cheeks and ears. As a dog owner, you must take responsibility for training your dog and keeping them under control at all times. The consequence of this media attention is that the courts and the public have grown intolerant of this behavior in dogs, according to Kenneth M. Phillips, an attorney in Beverly Hills, California, and author of DogBiteLaw.com, dog owners are at considerable risk of being sued if their dog bites someone. It is important that you research the laws in your area, so you know what to expect. Hi i have a 2 year old Patterdale Terrier, he has always been very excitable but is well trained. This means that if your dog bites another dog, animal or person, generally you are responsible for paying the vet bills and any other necessary damages to the owner of the animal that was bitten. Dogs in these situations are more likely to be protective and can become startled. If your dog bites the vet during an examination, it could be chalked up to stress. You are responsible for your dog's behavior and are the first line of defense in preventing dog bites. All children and adults should learn how to keep themselves safe around dogs. Remember, however, that if your dog bites someone while in a public place … Learn about the signs of distress in your pet fish in order to treat it and prevent it in the future. In the meantime, take steps to protect others from your dog by confining him. If a dog is not feeling well, they may not even want to be approached or touched by their favorite people. After a dog bite occurs, your first reaction might be shock or panic. When meeting an unknown dog, allow the dog to come to you. Probably the second most important factor is … If a dog bites, attacks, or hurts someone in this state, it may be labeled as a dangerous or nuisance dog. An animal owner is anyone who owns, keeps, or cares for an animal. Could your dog be euthanized or taken away from you? Your dog can bite someone anywhere at any time. I live in Orlando Florida. Dog bites are often in the news, especially if they prove fatal. In some states, law enforcement is authorized to remove your dog from your premises after he bites someone. This means the owner of a dog that bites someone faces liability in a civil lawsuit for the victim’s injuries even if the animal has never bitten before and the owner had no reason to believe the animal was dangerous.. Every year in the United States, dogs bite an estimated 4.5 million people. California dog bite law imposes strict liability on owners. However, not everybody has dogs or is willing to let go of a dog bite. Phillips recommends making sure the victim gets medical attention. What kind of dog, what age is the dog, what are the circumstances when this happens. Inform local authorities of the incident and comply with their orders. If it does bite or attack, however, here’s what happens. Dogs bring a lot of joy to our lives, but they can also bring problems. Of course, this is the last resort. Never run or scream. Washing the wound thoroughly … If a dog is known to bite others, or act in an aggressive way when startled, owners have a duty to ensure these acts are avoided. Contrary to what most people believe, just because your dog has bitten someone doesn’t mean you will have to put it down. The consequences of a dog bite depend on the severity of the bite, the relationship you have with the person who was bitten, and even your dog’s breed. With insurance, you will be protected up to the limits of the policy for all of those costs, plus medical bills and other secondary costs. A quarantine period may be required. Laws may require that your dog is euthanized if your dog is considered "dangerous," if the injury was very serious, or if a fatality occurred. An owner questions why hamster brought home are quickly dying. When a visitor to a pet dog proprietor’s home or building endures a canine bite injury, the owner is most likely liable for the resulting problems. If you knew your dog was vicious or dangerous, and you failed to keep it locked up, you might also be guilty of a felony. However, it is important to take swift action if a dog bite occurs. “There are very few exceptions to this rule. Work with a vet or veterinary behaviorist to determine why your dog lashed out. As a pet owner, it’s your responsibility to be prepared for that possibility. Pet Central looks at the bird egg inside and out from size and color to its basic structure. You can do a lot to reduce the chances of your dog biting someone by following these guidelines: As a dog owner, it’s important to know the laws in your state regarding dog bites just in case an incident occurs with your dog. Will there be legal ramifications? After a dog bite occurs, your first reaction might be shock or panic. Even if you don't have a dog yourself, it's important to know proper behavior for interacting with dogs and how and when to approach one. The best plan is to contact a professional trainer and possibly a veterinary behaviorist. You have to ensure that your dog is not a menace for health staff, postal workers, delivery staff, and other professionals who may come to visit you. This shows the victim that you are accepting responsibility for your dog. It can’t get these labels due to its breed or just from growling or looking mean. What might happen if my dog bites someone? In many states, it is illegal to leave the scene if your dog bites someone. Instead, contact a veterinary professional or animal control for assistance. If you're knocked over by a dog, fall to your side in a fetal position, covering your head and face. If the bite is minor and the person who got bitten was a family member or close friend, you may get by with a sincere apology and some first aid. Dogs are known as man’s best friend. States that do not have a strict liability statute when it comes to dog attacks usually have a “one bite rule,” according to Bisnar. I’m a personal injury attorney in Chicago. Provide your insurance information, if applicable. Then, both the dog and its owner may face strict penalties. Should your dog bite someone or another pet, there are two primary concerns: the dog’s behavioral health and your legal responsibility. It is not necessary for your dog to bite or physically injure a person for a felony to occur. In most instances, however, this means that you as the owner are liable for any injury that your pet causes. If you are fortunate enough to get to keep your dog, it is your responsibility to prevent this type of thing from happening in the future. Desislava Panteva Photography/Getty Images. “You might also be liable if you are a ‘keeper’ of the dog — someone who does not own the dog but houses the dog on behalf of the owner — and you know about the tendency of that dog to attack or bite people.”. If it's thyroid disease, medication can control the disease, including aggressive behaviours that may result. Next, Bisnar suggests notifying your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance company or broker about the incident. Work with your dog to adjust its reaction to the trigger. They may think it's part of the fun at first, but even that can turn to aggression quickly. Dog bites that look mild on the surface can get serious very fast. It's important to do whatever you can to keep your dog from biting, and these tips can help: Dogs are cute and often friendly, so it's easy to get excited when you see one. If you are able to determine what triggered the bite, try to keep your dog from getting into the same situation. Learn about the benefits of aromatherapy for pets such as how essential oils can be used for fleas. The injured person can sue you for any money they paid for their injuries. However, the truth is that even kind and gentle dogs can bite under the wrong circumstances. If the attack happened because of an intruder, different rules could apply, Bisnar says, but generally speaking, any dog bite in California is considered the dog owner’s fault. They are an extension of your own behavior. Many dogs with aggression can be helped through training, socialization, and behavior modification. Dr. Monica Tarantino is a small animal veterinarian based in the Charlotte, NC area with five years of general practitioner experience. Avoid laying blame or getting defensive. The mere fact that a dog might bite someone would suggest that the dog owner has been negligent because they failed to properly control the animal. Fortunately, responsible dog ownership and education of the public can keep everyone safe. This scenario is one that many pet owners would prefer not to think about. “This means dog owners are responsible for the actions of their dogs, no ifs or buts,” he says. Immediately quarantine your dog at home if you can.”. What should you do when your dog bites someone? Do not put your face close to an unknown dog; this includes "hugs and kisses.". Startled, Pebbles turned around and bit the child on the arm. If the kid tell the parent and wants to call the cops, does my dog automatically get put down? However, they can quickly turn on someone they don't know. In reality, proving your dog was provoked or somehow justified will be difficult unless it can be proven that the victim was committing a crime. For health-related questions, always consult your veterinarian, as they have examined your pet, know the pet's health history, and can make the best recommendations for your pet. Teach these things to children as well so everyone knows what to do to prevent dog bites. Get our FREE training guide when you sign up for the Spruce Pets newsletter! What happens to your dog if it bites someone? Mother dogs will fiercely protect their puppies as well. If anyone feels that your dog may hurt someone, the … Contact your veterinarian and obtain your dog's medical records. Do not approach, touch, or attempt to move an injured dog. One out of five of those people require medical attention, according to the Centers for Disease Control. If your animal bites someone, you could be sued in both civil and criminal court. And if they bite someone random that probably has dogs, that person might be forgiving. Owners can be issued an unlimited fine or … Dog bites can also be prevented, especially if you know why they might bite. What Happens If My Dog Bites Someone Who Invades My Property? “If your dog bites someone, be sure to exchange information and open a clear line of communication,” says John Bisnar, founding partner of Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys in Los Angeles. Jenna Stregowski, RVT, has more than 20 years of experience working in veterinary medicine and has been writing about pet care for the last decade. Above all, it is the ethical thing to do, even if you have an explanation for the dog bite. The following conditions typically apply in dog bite cases: The dog bite victim may choose to press charges or file a civil suit against you. Civil Court– Dog owners are responsible for injuries from bites in most states. “If you are nice, the victim may decide to go easy on both you and your dog.”. Animal control can seize the dog and, in the worst case, euthanize it. If the animal is your pet, and the accident happened unprovoked, you are typically required to compensate the victim for damages, but what happens if it’s a stray dog that bites someone on your property? Criminal Court– This is rare, but if the attack was serious enough or if the dog has a rap sheet you could be accused of a number of crimes. That has now changed; so if your dog bites … It may even help you avoid a messy lawsuit. Hurting a dog even if by accident like pushing on sore hips in an older dog can provoke a bite as well. Don't delay, if your dog bites someone, take the following steps: Dog bite laws can vary greatly depending on the local jurisdiction. “There are very few exceptions to this rule. Even if your dog has never shown signs of aggression, something can happen that can trigger your dog to react with his teeth. Show compassion, of course, kindness cannot be used against you in court. Offer to contact a friend or family member for the victim. Note: While this article gives you some idea what to expect in a dog bite situation, it is not intended to take the place of legal counsel. The only exception here is when a dog bites someone, such as a burglar, who enters your home illegally. A dog that bites a person is typically quarantined for a minimum of 10 days, he said. You need to give more information. The Spruce Pets uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. Comments. The maximum penalty is 10 years imprisonment. The legislation also makes it an offence if a person is worried or afraid (the term is 'reasonable apprehension') that a dog may bite them. He will likely be quarantined at a local shelter or veterinarian’s office. They sometimes piddle in the house, tear up pillows and bark in the middle of the night. How do I prevent this? Depending on the severity of the bite, an ambulance may be needed. No matter how minor the bite is, the victim should seek medical care. 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