How often have you been startled by the barking of a dog as you pass by or visit a home? Sometimes, what first appears to be a friendly pooch, can quickly change to a seemingly vicious hound. Let’s say that the dog does turn vicious and lashes out and bites, then what? What protections do you have if you are a visitor to a property which has a dog on the premises? Below are some answers to common questions pertaining to dog bites in the San Diego area.
Q: My neighbor’s dog came onto my property and bit me. What do I do?
A: In California, a dog owner is liable for their pet, whether it is the first time it has bitten or if it has happened more than once. This protection is extended to anyone lawfully in a public or private location and does not include trespassers. Additionally, the law applies to the dog’s owner and not anyone who is temporarily responsible for the pet.
In this case, it would appear that the dog owner is liable for any injuries caused by his or her pet. It would be best to contact an attorney who is qualified in personal injuries involving dog bites.
Q: What should I do if I was bitten by a property-owner’s dog while I was performing work at the residence?
A: Good question! If you were asked to perform work on the property, then the property owner is responsible to make reasonable efforts to keep you safe from their dog. Not only would you most likely be covered under California’s Dog Bite Statute, you may even have a workers’ compensation claim. However, it is best to consult with an attorney directly to find out more details on this situation.
Dog bites can lead to serious physical and emotional injuries. Either of which can severely impact a victim’s life. If you or a loved one has been bitten by a dog, it is important for you to find out what rights are available.
Source: FindLaw, “San Diego Dog Bites: The Basics,” Feb. 7, 2014