Does Signage Affect Dog Bite Liability?
Many of us keep dogs as pets, but it’s important to remember that dogs can be very dangerous. According to the CDC, about 4.5 million people are attacked by dogs every year. And over 800,000 of these victims require medical attention for their injuries.
Dog owners are legally responsible for the harm that their animals cause. If you were injured by a violent dog, you have the right to seek damages from a negligent dog owner, even if they posted Beware of Dog! signs on their property.
Dog Owner Liability in Texas
There are two requirements for establishing dog owner liability in Texas:
- The owner failed to act in a reasonably prudent manner.
- The owner knew or should have known that the dog was violent.
In fact, Beware of Dog! signs can actually increase the owner’s legal exposure because they acknowledge awareness of the animal’s violent tendencies. Dog owners would be better advised to post signs that simply say No Trespassing or Dog on Property.
A dog owner can be held negligent for damages resulting from a dog attack when they fail to take sensible steps to protect people. Factors that may be considered when assessing the owner’s liability include:
- The victim is a child.
- The gate was left open.
- The animal is trained as a guard dog.
- The fence isn’t high enough to restrain the dog.
- The victim was a guest who was visiting the property.
- The owner was in violation of local fence and leash laws.
- The dog was not properly restrained in the enclosed area.
- The dog behaved aggressively or attacked someone in the past.
- The victim was someone who was legally on the property, such as a mailman.
When the Victim Is a Child
Most victims of dog attacks are children. They are particularly vulnerable to dog bites because of their small size, and children may not be fully aware of the dangers posed by dogs.
Dog attacks cause tremendous physical and psychological harm to children, and they may suffer lifelong consequences. Damages inflicted on a child by a dog attack may include:
- Emotional trauma
- Sleep disturbances
- Clinging to parents
- Fear of dogs (cynophobia)
- Fear of going outside (agoraphobia)
How Your Houston Dog Bite Attorney Can Help
It can be difficult to prevail in a dog bite claim in Texas. Unlike many other states, Texas requires you to demonstrate that the owner was aware that their dog was a threat to others. This requires an experienced Houston dog bite lawyer like Mr. Khosravian at DK Law.
DK Law will conduct a thorough investigation of the incident. We’ll interview witnesses, consult with medical experts, review the victim’s medical records, and scrutinize reports from police and animal control.
When our investigation is complete, DK Law will file a claim against the person who negligently allowed the attack to happen. A Houston personal injury claim may include the following types of damages:
- Current and future medical bills
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Psychological counseling
- Plastic surgery
- Reduced earning potential
- Reconstructive surgery
- Wrongful death
We’ve Won Millions of Dollars for Our Clients
If somebody harmed you or a loved one, they should have to pay for it.
At DK Law, we’re always available for our clients. And we know how to win. Our founder Mr. Khosravian is a lifetime member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum.
Call (281) 402-8856 or contact our Houston area office online to learn more today.