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What types of animals bites can result in legal action?

Owning an animal is very common in Arizona and other states across the nation. A pet can be a good companion and can be a great way to reduce anxiety and stress. While there are many benefits associated with pet ownership, there are some risks. If visitors or even trespassers enter a person's property, the pet owner may have liability for any harm caused to the person injured in an animal attack.

When one hears animal attacks, it is likely that they are picturing a vicious dog attacking an innocent person; however this is not always the case. Although dog bites make up a large portion of animal attack cases, these are not the only animals that could cause harm to another.

What types of animal bites can result in legal action? Because dogs are a major source for animal bites, most states, Arizona included, have enacted dog-bite laws. These laws impose liability on a dog owner if their dog causes injuries. In addition to dogs, other domestic animals could be a source of injuries from attacks or bites. These include cats, horses and farm animals.

For example, a horse, which has a greater tendency to kick than bite, could injure a rider. Depending on the circumstances, the owner of the horse could be liable for any injuries caused by the horse. However, if a rider has assumed the risks, was partly negligent or provoked the horse, the horse owner may not be liable for the injuries of the rider.

Wild animals kept as pets are also a source of animal bites and attacks. These animals are often subject to strict liability, meaning that the owner is liable for any injuries caused. This remains true even if the owner has taken extreme measures to protect people from the wild animal. Because the wild animal is viewed as uncontrollable and vicious, any harm caused by this animal is the responsibility of the owner.

Suffering serious injuries due to an animal attack is a shocking and emotional event. It can be difficult to move past such a situation, but victims of an animal attack should understand that there are options available. A personal injury suit could help the injured party recover compensation for any damages.

Source:, "Does the Type of Animal Affect a Bite Injury Case?" accessed Nov. 6, 2016

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Law Office of Keith A. Hammond, P.C.

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