Can an Animal Attack Lawyer Help If Another Dog Attacked My Dog?

Can an Animal Attack Lawyer Help If Another Dog Attacked My Dog?

We’ve helped many clients recover financial compensation after dog bites, but what if another dog attacked your dog? Can you sue someone for damages? A bite from another animal can severely injure or kill another, which can result in costly veterinary bills. 

Legally, a dog owner has a “duty of care” to prevent their dog from hurting someone else. However, dog fights are different. We’ll look at California law and some challenges an animal attack lawyer can help with when you’re seeking compensation.

How Do I File a Claim If My Dog Is Attacked?

It can be difficult to recover veterinary care and other costs when your dog is attacked. Under the law, dogs are seen as property, so your legal options are typically limited. It’s unlikely you’ll recover damages for emotional distress, pain and suffering, etc. The more likely scenario is compensation for the “real market value” of the dog if it’s unfortunately killed in the attack and is a service animal or show dog.

If your dog is attacked by another dog and you feel you deserve compensation, make sure to take the following steps:

  • Get the dog owner’s contact information, insurance details, and the name of their dog.
  • File a dog bite report with your local animal control agency.
  • Keep copies of bills, payments, and other documents related to medical care.
  • Ask your vet to document the dog attack and related injuries.
  • Request the other dog owner pay your veterinary bills.
  • Contact an attorney who specializes in dog bite attacks.

California Dog Bite Law

Most aspects of dog bite law in California pertain to dogs biting people. Dog owners are responsible for all bites that take place in public spaces or that occur on private property. However, the victim must be lawfully visiting at the time of the bite. A dog owner is usually not liable if a trespasser is bitten unless they are somehow negligent.

The state of California imposes strict liability rules on dog bite attacks. It doesn’t matter if the owner had reason to suspect the dog would bite or if it previously showed vicious behavior. A dog labeled “dangerous” under the law can be euthanized, kept in a fenced yard, or leashed at all times. The dog can be considered potentially dangerous if it:

  • Injured or killed at least two domestic animals in the past three years (without provocation).
  • Bit a person without provocation and caused a minor injury.
  • Showed unprovoked aggression towards people in two or more incidents within three years.

Therefore, a dog attack on another dog can have legal repercussions. California law can impose tough restrictions on a vicious dog. These don’t always involve euthanization, but owners can be stiffly fined for violations.

Examples of Dog-on-Dog Attacks

The legal consequences of a dog-on-dog attack depend on the circumstances of the incident. An animal attack lawyer can analyze the facts and apply various aspects of the law to determine if the owner has liability. Examples of common circumstances include:

  • The Attacking Dog Was Unleashed: A dog owner can be found negligent if they failed in their duty to protect others. In some cases, the breed of the dog or its history of dog attacks may be questioned.
  • The Dog Has a History of Violent Behavior: Under California law, an owner who knows the animal bit someone in the past must provide their contact information and details about the animal’s history, including medical records.
  • Both Dogs Escaped from Their Yards: The owners of both dogs may have violated the law, which expresses that no person owning or having control of an animal shall allow it to stray and run free in a private or public area without consent. 
  • A Neighbor’s Dog Wanders Onto Your Property and Is Attacked: If a neighbor’s dog escaped its owner’s backyard and entered your property, and your dog then gave chase to it, you probably won’t be liable since your dog was protecting its territory.
  • Your Dog Attacked a Neighbor’s Dog: If you let your dog outside, it breaks its leash, and attacks a neighbor’s dog, you could be civilly responsible for related veterinary bills but won’t likely face criminal charges.

Contact Our Los Angeles Animal Attack Lawyer

A dog or other animal owner can be held liable if their pet injures a victim. The law is more complicated when a dog is attacked by another dog. Our personal injury attorneys can help, especially when trespassing isn’t a factor. To ensure you get the compensation you deserve, our experts perform a thorough investigation and provide effective legal representation. Call (888) 952-2952 to learn more and receive a free consultation.

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