Although we love animals at the Nielsen Law Firm, we also recognize the danger they pose in the hands of negligent owners. If you or your child suffers a serious injury in an animal attack, consider legal action against the person responsible for your sake—and to prevent another injury. A serious attack can cause life-long injuries, permanent scarring or death and leave a victim or family traumatized.
DOG BITES IN TEXAS
Texas typically follows the one bite rule in dog bite cases. Unless an owner knew about a dog’s proclivity towards aggression or had experienced the dog’s aggressive tendencies in the past, the owner is not responsible for the dog’s first bite. While many people have strong beliefs about breed tendencies, our firm recognizes that any dog has the potential to bite and inflict serious damage. We take every dog bite seriously and work hard to hold owners accountable for their dogs’ actions.
Some of our clients are hesitant about moving forward with a dog bite claim because they are afraid of antagonizing a friend or neighbor. We understand that some dog bite situations are highly sensitive due to those relationships. Filing a claim is often a matter of practicality and principle. We often fight to secure adequate compensation from a homeowner’s or renter’s policy, so the money does not come directly from the owner.
On the other hand, we can use a civil claim to exact a measure of justice from careless dog owners who are not only negligent, but also who actively refuse to handle the situation. In severe dog bite cases, we will pursue punitive damages that punish the person responsible for your or your loved one’s injuries.
ANIMAL ATTACKS IN TEXAS
In addition to dog attacks, we represent clients who have suffered injuries after wildlife attacks and other owned animal assaults. Whether you suffered an injury from a pet snake or face an alligator attack at a hotel or commercial property, you may have the right to file a personal injury claim. People who keep wild animals, for example, may face strict liability if the animal attacks and seriously injures someone. In fact, someone does not necessarily have to keep the animal on his or her own property to face strict liability. Releasing a potentially dangerous wild animal into the area may also subject an individual to strict liability (rehabilitating and properly reintroducing a wild animal to its natural habitat is different).
Under premises liability laws, owners are responsible for keeping their properties reasonably safe or warning visitors about the potential dangers—including proximity to dangerous wild animals. If a restaurant or hotel allows dogs on the property, fails to adequately contain food scraps, or is located in an area wild animals frequent, the property owner may face liability for injuries.
THE COMPLEXITIES OF ANIMAL ATTACK CASES
Every animal attack case is different and requires careful review. The circumstances of the attack weigh heavily in these cases. Plaintiffs may have a hard time pursuing a case if the defendant can prove the victim was provoking the animal or that the owner did not have previous knowledge of the attack hazard.
At the Nielsen Law Firm, we understand that details matter in animal attack cases. We have extensive knowledge of state and local laws and precedents that govern animal attacks, and we pursue our cases using the full extent of the law. Dog bites and animal attacks are frightening and wholly preventable.
After an animal attack, remember to:
- Keep evidence of the attack including bloodied clothes
- Report the incident
- Seek medical assistance
- Contact an attorney
For a free case evaluation, reach out to our Houston, Texas office.