Americans love dogs. There’s a good chance you are one of those folks who is fond of “man’s best friend.” But as loveable, smart, and domesticated as dogs may be, they remain animals prone to unpredictable – and sometimes violent – behavior. Some dogs may have a propensity for aggression, while others may bite, jump or scratch if they are surprised or feel threatened. When dogs, especially large or strong ones, act out and attack people, they can cause severe and sometimes permanent injuries and disfigurement.
Dogs bite an estimated that 4.5 million Americans every year, resulting in hundreds of thousands of emergency room visits, thousands of hospitalizations, and scores of deaths. Dogs were responsible for the deaths of 34 Texans between 2005 and 2013. In 2017, dog bites and other dog-related injuries accounted for more than one-third of all homeowners’ liability claim dollars paid out, totaling almost $700 million.
Injuries from dog bites can require costly and painful medical treatment, physical rehabilitation, and reconstructive surgery, in addition to the physical and psychological trauma left behind in the aftermath of a dog attack.
We Obtain Needed and Deserved Compensation for Austin Dog Attack Victims
While many dog attacks happen suddenly and unexpectedly, that does not relieve a dog’s owner of responsibility for the actions of his or her pet. All dog owners must use reasonable care to maintain control of their pets, and those who own dogs that they know have a propensity towards violent behavior are held to an even higher standard. If a dog attacks, bites and injures someone in Texas, the victim may be able to file a personal injury suit and seek compensation from the dog’s owner under certain circumstances.
If you or a loved one was bitten or attacked by a dog and suffered injuries as a result, the Austin personal injury attorneys at Sandoval James can help. We hold dog owners accountable for their failure to protect others and work tirelessly to obtain the maximum amount of damages available to compensate innocent victims for their injuries, pain, and other losses.
Two Ways to Hold Dog Owners Accountable
In Texas, dog owners can be held liable for the harm caused by their pets in one of two ways. The first is for a victim to prove that the owner was negligent and failed to use reasonable care to restrain, train or socialize, or handle his or her dog in a manner appropriate for the circumstances and surroundings.
In some cases, however, a victim will not need to show that the owner acted negligently. Some dog owners will be held to a “strict liability” standard and just the fact that the dog attacked and caused injury will be enough to hold the owner liable for any proven damages. Strict liability will apply to the owner or handler of the dog if:
- The dog had dangerous propensities abnormal to its class;
- The person knew or had reason to know the dog had dangerous propensities; and
- Those propensities caused the plaintiff’s injuries.
Sandoval James: Austin Dog Bite Attorneys
No matter which standard applies to your circumstances and no matter how serious your injuries, the Austin dog bite attorneys at Sandoval James will be relentless in our efforts to secure compensation for you. We know how difficult life can be after a dog attack, with lost wages, large medical bills, and the struggles of rehabilitation and reconstruction. That is why we are so committed to the well-being of every client we have the privilege to represent.
To arrange for your free initial consultation with one of our Austin personal injury lawyers, please call us today at 512-382-7707 or contact us online.