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Proving fault when dog owners know their pets are dangerous

Many times, pet attacks in the Allentown region seem to come from nowhere. The victims, and even animal owners, may be minding their own business when the pet bites, mauls or otherwise attacks. Liability cases involving unexpected animal bites and attacks have their own set of challenges, but what happens if the pet owner knows their animals are dangerous before they attack?

As we stated above, many attacks are unexpected and surprising, but if the pet owner knows the animal is dangerous, it can make the incident even more tragic for victims. The first step in proving that someone willfully violated Pennsylvania’s Dangerous Dog Laws is determining if the owner was aware of the pet’s aggression. Here are some clues to watch for:

  • The animal was trained to serve as a guard dog
  • The owner sometimes muzzles the dog
  • The owner warns others about the dog or posts warning signs
  • Previous complaints exist about the dog’s behavior
  • The dog is often caged or restrained

These clues may give you some knowledge about the dog’s personality and behavior. We have seen many cases in which an owner feels he or she is protecting others by muzzling or restraining the animal and by warning others about potential aggression. However, as well all know, pets can escape their bonds unexpectedly leading to serious animal bites and attacks.

We want all victims to understand that it is the pet owner’s responsibility to comply with the state’s dog laws. If you are bitten, mauled or otherwise injured in an attack, these laws exist to provide you with a legal remedy. We invite you to learn more about animal bites and liability on the pages of our injury website.