Beebe and O'Neil

Who is responsible in a dog bite case?

Few things are more terrifying than a dog attack. If you or a loved one suffers a dog bite, does Connecticut law protect you?

It mostly depends on the factors surrounding the incident, states the Connecticut General Assembly. In many cases, the pet owner would be held liable for the compensation of your medical expenses and other damages. The following examples show when a dog owner would most likely be deemed at fault:

  • The dog was roaming off its owner’s property and was off leash when it bit you, such as running down a sidewalk or in a park where it is posted that leashes are required.
  • You were not doing anything to tease or provoke the attack.
  • You were walking near the owner’s property but not trespassing, and the dog rushed over to attack.
  • The dog had a previous history of biting, and the owner had done nothing to prevent further attacks, restrain the dog or warn you to keep your distance.

There are other instances, however, in which the owner would not be found negligent. For example, you should not go onto someone else’s property uninvited if there are signs warning of an aggressive dog or the owner says you might get bitten. If you or a child provoked the animal, such as kicking it or deliberately getting into its face in a threatening manner, the owner may not be held responsible.

You can protect yourself by understanding dog laws in Connecticut and being respectful around potentially dangerous animals. However, it is not always possible to avoid an attack if an owner is being careless. Dog attacks can cause serious injuries, disfigurement and even death. Pet owners who are found liable may face criminal penalties in addition to being responsible for the victim’s compensation. The information in this blog is not legal advice, but should be considered as general information regarding liability in animal attacks.

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