Dog Owners May Be Liable Even If Dog Did Not Bite

Owners are responsible for their dogs whether the dog bites or causes damage in some other way. Kentucky's strict-liability dog bite law, KRS 258.235 (4), states that “Any owner whose dog is found to have caused damage to a person, livestock or other property shall be responsible for that damage.” This means, the owner is liable for their dog even if the dog didn't bite anyone. The owner is liable for what the dog damages.

Kentucky law
The law covers injuries caused to a person, making the owner or the keeper of the dog strictly liable for damages. This means that the owner of the dog that bites a person is liable for the injuries, even if the owner was not at-fault or if the owner had no idea that the dog acted viciously. There are a few exceptions, though. One exception is if the person injured had provoked the dog, like hitting the dog or trespassing.

The law applies not only to dog bites, but also to injuries or damages caused by the behavior of the dog. For instance, a person who was injured after a dog ran into the back of their knee, resulting in kneecap dislocation. Another example is when a pouncing dog knocks a person to the ground and the fall injured them. These people may seek compensation for the injuries, even if the dog did not actually bite them during the incident. Kentucky’s dog bite statute also covers damages that dogs have caused to livestock or other property.

Related: Kentucky Dog Bite Series: Three Most Aggressive Dog Breeds

2012 statistics

  • There were 38 fatal dog attacks in the U.S. in 2012.
  • Attacks that involved more than one dog accounted for 34% of dog attack-related deaths.
  • Pit bulls and Rottweilers, together, accounted for 68% of all fatal attacks.
  • Out of the fatal dog attacks, 50% were adults and the remaining 50% were children, ages 8-years-old and younger.
  • From those, 61% of the victims were males and 39% were females.
  • Roughly 32% of all dog bite fatality victims were either visiting or living temporarily with the dog’s owner when the fatal attack happened.
  • From 2005 to 2012, pit bulls killed 151 American, that's about one person every 19 days.

Related: Dog Bites In America

As a Kentucky Dog Bite Attorney, I want to remind everyone to always supervise your dog. Your dog can bite or attack unexpectedly. I've heard stories of owners being surprised when their usually friendly dog bites someone. If you or your loved ones have suffered a dog bite or damage, you need a Kentucky attorney who understands dog bites and dangerous animal attacks. Injuries and damages are associated with medical expenses, lost wages and other bills you have to pay. You have the right to get the compensation you deserve after being attacked by a dog.

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