Having a pet is very comforting, and many residents in Texas get a dog for companionship. Because they feel like a member of a family, dog owners not only ensure their basic needs are met, but that they are healthy and safe. The responsibilities go beyond this, however, as some dogs may not be friendly with each and everyone they encounter. Thus, a dog owner must take steps to protect others from potential dog bites or attacks.
When a dog bite occurs, it can be a shocking and traumatic event. Not only was it unexpected, but also the bite victim is now dealing with excruciating pain, emotional trauma and possible disfigurement because of the dog attack. Dealing with the aftermath of a dog bite can be overwhelming; however, a bite victim should understand that it is possible to hold a dog owner liable for the damages caused by the bite.
In the state of Texas, they have a one bite rule. This means that even if this was the first time a dog has bit a person, a dog owner is strictly liable for the bite if it is determined that the dog owner had knowledge that the animal could be dangerous.
Although the state of Texas lacks statutes for civil liability for dog bites, it does have criminal statutes. This means that a dog owner could be held criminally liable if they were negligent or had reason to know their dog was dangerous. This means, it could result in felony charges if serious injuries resulted and the dog owner was negligent.
Because the harm and damages caused by a dog bite can be significant, bite victims are able to hold dog owners strictly liable for the damages suffered. This means, through a personal injury action, the bite victim could recover compensation to address losses as they relate to the physical, emotional, mental and financial harms suffered as a result of a dog bite.