Texas Laws Concerning A Dog Bite Are Complex

by Terry Bryant

In Texas, the law is complex concerning a dog bite, but an attorney may be able to help when a person is attacked by a canine. The victim will have to prove that the animal had exhibited aggressive behavior in the past. The owner may also be liable if he was in violation of animal control laws at the time of the attack. In many cases, it may be difficult to gather the facts needed to put together a strong case. With the help of a legal expert, though, the process can be expedited.

Some professionals are protected from liability in the event of an attack. These include police officers, veterinarians and their employees and people working at an animal shelter. An owner is also protected from liability if the canine attacked a person committing a violent crime.

Texas is a “one bit law” state. This means that an owner is usually not held responsible the first time an animal attacks. Once a canine has exhibited aggressive behavior, though, it is the owner’s responsibility to ensure a second attack does not occur. In general, the second time a canine attacks a person, the owner is liable. The owner is also liable if he was aware of aggressive behavior in the canine’s past and the animal attacked without provocation.

Following a dog bite, the attorney will investigate whether or not the owner was following animal control laws when the attack occurred. Animal control regulations state that if a canine is known to be aggressive, the owner must take precautions to prevent another attack. These precautions include containing the animal in a secured enclosure when outside, placing the animal on a leash when in public and taking out liability insurance in case the canine harms a person.