Although they can be welcome companions, dogs can still act aggressively towards people at any time and endanger our safety. When dog attacks occur, they often leave victims with physical and emotional scars that are difficult to heal — especially for children, who suffer about half of all dog attacks in the country. In such instances, a dog bite lawsuit may be needed to compensate victims for losses caused by the attack.
Although nothing can truly replace the peace of mind lost through a dog attack, we can seek full compensation for your pain and suffering, and can help you begin the process of moving forward with your life.
If a dog has attacked you or a loved one, call the dog bite attorneys at Pierce | Skrabanek at (832) 690-7000 for a free consultation to discuss your case and how we can help.
Texas Dog Bite Law
Texas dog bite laws place the burden on dog bite victims to prove negligence on the owner’s part before recovering damages. This practice, known in Texas as the “one bite rule,” is infamous for allowing a dog to bite ‘one’ person before the owner becomes liable for its behavior. If you have been bitten by a dog, recovering damages may depend on whether your lawyer can prove the dog’s owner:
- Had knowledge of the dog biting someone or acting aggressively in the past, or
- Was negligent in attempts to control the dog and prevent the attack from happening, directly leading to your injuries
This does not always exclude owners from being sued for compensation. If the owner knows that the particular breed of his dog is dangerous, or if recent events could possibly make the dog more aggressive, the owner could be liable for the first bite.
The city of Houston operates under a “dangerous dog” ordinance, which requires owners of more volatile breeds (pit bull terriers, Rottweilers, etc.) to carry at least $100,000 in liability insurance.
Still, it can be difficult for a victim to prove liability in a dog owner and recover damages for their injuries. This makes it important that you have a Houston dog bite attorney with experience investigating negligent dog owners. The laws involving the responsibilities of dog owners are tricky, and you need an attorney who can successfully build a case to hold them responsible.
Dog Bite Negligence in Texas
In Texas, proving negligence means establishing that the owner failed to use reasonable care to prevent an attack from happening, while also being aware that the dog was aggressive or dangerous.
For example, if you were bitten by an unsupervised dog who should not have been allowed to roam freely, you may be able to claim damages from negligence. Houston law specifically requires dogs to be kept on leashes in public places or on private properties. If an unleashed dog bit you in an area where dogs are required to be leashed, the owner may be in direct violation of this law.
If you or a loved one has been attacked by a dog, contact our attorneys today at (832) 690-7000 for a free consultation to discuss your case and how we can help.
Types of Dog Bites
The effects of a dog bite vary, depending on the dog and the person. The most common injuries and consequences of dog bites are:
- Puncture wounds
- Deep lacerations requiring surgery
- Severe scarring
- Broken bones
Certain dog bite injuries are more severe than others; however, all of them carry risks disease risks such as rabies, as well as the emotional trauma of a violent dog attack.
What to Do If You Were Bit by a Dog?
After a dog bite, it’s important you get medical treatment as soon as possible. Even if your dog bite injury does not seem serious, there is a risk the dog that bit you was carrying rabies or other transferable diseases. Additionally, medical professionals will provide documentation of your injuries that will assist if you pursue a claim against the owner.
Take pictures of any injuries inflicted on you, and take down the name and address of the dog’s owner, as well as the breed of the dog. Collect contact information for anyone who may have seen the attack as well, because they may be important witnesses if the dog owner attempts to claim that the attack was provoked.
Report the attack to animal control or the police, and describe the dog and the circumstances under which the attack happened. Then be sure to contact a Houston dog bite lawyer at Pierce Skrabanek for a consultation. Our consultations are free, confidential, and carry no obligation. Take a moment to learn more about your rights by calling (832) 690-7000.
Proving Your Texas Dog Bite Case
Too often, Texas law protects dog owners from serious liability after an attack. Because of this, it is vital that you have a Texas dog bite attorney who has experience fighting the defense lawyers, proving fault, and winning damages for your injuries.
At Pierce Skrabanek, our legal team will investigate to expose:
- The dog’s aggressive, vicious or dangerous past behavior
- The owner’s knowledge of this behavior, and any past actions taken in response to it
- The owner’s careless handling of the dog and negligent response to the situation causing your injury
Contact an Attorney
When we take a dog bite case, we collect expert testimony, gather records of the dog and owner’s history, and obtain verbal accounts of the encounter from neighbors and witnesses. We do everything we can to build a strong case that will get you the verdict or settlement you need to move on.
Call our office today at (832) 690-7000 for a free consultation to find out what you can expect moving forward, and how we can help. A dog bite lawsuit may help you obtain compensation for the losses caused by a dog attack.