Did Your Dog Bite Someone?
Here’s how you may be held responsible in New York
In 2012, it was estimated that New York City is the home to over 600,000 dogs. Their owners see them as 600,000 of the sweetest creatures while non-dog lovers see them as the 600,000 vicious sets of teeth just waiting to sink into your leg. Whichever side of the fence you’re standing on, the fact is that it is still possible that your sweet pooch may one day lose its cool and bite someone. Did your dog bite someone? Let’s look at the legal implications.
Can they sue you?
According to New York laws, you get the first bite for free. Seems fair. If your dog has bitten someone before, you will have to pay for any medical or veterinary costs. If the victim wants to claim any other damages, he or she would have to prove that the dog had dangerous tendencies and that you were aware of it. They can’t expect you to reimburse them just based on negligence.
What is proof that a dog has dangerous tendencies?
- Size and type of breed
- Watchdog or Lapdog?
- Aggressive behavior like biting or snapping
- Previous complaints about the dog’s behavior that were brought to your attention
- Fighting with other animals
- Using muzzles and chains to confine the dog at times may show that you know the dog is dangerous
- Written or verbal warnings about the animal
- Any statement by you about the animal’s character.