Thursday, April 19, 2012

Dog Bites – When Dogs Bite People

Though not often talked about when keeping pet dogs is being discussed, dog bite scenarios are among the many “watch out for” aspects in keeping dogs, a part of the whole dog-pet-keeping process which, depending on situations, have its own list of legal ramifications.

In the USA, the case of a dog biting a person is usually resolved with a straightforward settlement, typically in the form of full compensation given to the dog bite victim from the dog’s owner.

But given the differences of state statuses, county/city ordinances and court rulings/decisions in different states and localities, the “dog owner making it up to the bitten victim” setup isn’t always a resolution, since parties other than a dog owner can be held accountable for a dog bite situation.

Cases of landlords blamed for the biting activities of a stray dog, or employers who insisted orders on employees, thereby leading employees with dog bites, are known to be on record, with more and more cases related to dog bites pinning responsibility down on persons other than dog owners, even including dog bite victims as “guilty” parties.

Though there are differences in legal sanctions and rules in every state, one rule stands to be consistent, one which every dog owner should know about.

The one rule of dog bites

A dog owner or caretaker/harborer will be held liable for a dog bite situation if he/she was aware of the dog’s pre-existing tenacity to bite people.

Every state has this rule, and as such, dog owners/caretakers/harborers must take the time to know more about their dog’s tendencies, particularly with a pooch’s penchant to bite strangers who happen to be walking by.

As responsible dog owners, knowing about a dog’s habits is only expected from masters, after all, and enacting safeguards to keep dogs from biting people have to be set up.

A number of “messed up” cases have been ongoing around this rule, from cases where dog victims have to prove a dog’s owners’ awareness of the dog’s biting fixation, to parties deliberately getting themselves bitten, in an effort to gain something from the process.

As these cases prevail and are prevailing, the bottom line when it comes to dog bites and legalese is: dog owners should know their dogs, well enough to prevent dogs from biting needlessly.

So when it comes to dogs and dog bites, know your dog dear dog master. It will surely spare you from a lot of troubles and woes.

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