Dog Bites In Texas—Can You Protect Yourself?

It’s the end of a long day at work. Your taking your nightly walk around the block after eating dinner with your family. The sun is setting, and the streetlights are beginning to turn on. As your walking down the sidewalk, you see dog in the distance. You think nothing of it, so you continue down your path. The dog slowly begins to walk in your direction. As the dog gets closer, you realize its not on a leash. The dog begins to pick up his pace. Before you can protect yourself, the dog lunges towards you and attacks.  

Unpreventable Dangers  

Most of us don’t consider the dangers of just taking a stroll around our neighborhood. Many dog owners fail to control their dogs or keep them on a leash. This causes many people, including minor children and other dogs, to suffer from vicious dog attacks. Although we can do our best to be aware of our surroundings and guard our loved ones, sometimes these attacks aren’t preventable. That is why it is important to know your rights if this happens to you or a loved one. You may be able to use the law to protect yourself or your loved one. 

The Law In Texas

Texas has what is called the “One Bite Rule.” Thus, in Texas, an owner of a dog may not be held liable unless the dog either bit a person before or acted like they wanted to bite a person before (a vicious dog) and the owner knew of the dog’s dangerous conduct. Therefore, it is crucial to gather any evidence that may show a dog’s vicious behavior. Such evidence may be vet records, witnesses, or surveillance footage.

However, there are ways around the “One Bite Rule.” One may prove that the attack resulted due to the negligent handling of the dog. If it is shown that the owner or another person in control of the dog owed a duty to prevent the dog from injuring another at the time of the attack, the “One Bite Rule” may no longer apply.

Further, the “One Bite Rule” will not apply if it is found the owner or person in possession of the dog was negligent per se. One may be held to be negligent per se when they violate a law set in place by the State, County, or City. For example, although Texas does not have a statewide leash law, many cities have enacted such laws. Therefore, if a dog attacks while off a leash in a particular city, such as Houston, the owner or person in possession may be held liable under negligence per se.

The Experienced Lawyers

At Attorney Brian White and Associates, dog-bite cases are one of our specialties. We know what it takes to help get you what you deserve after going through one of these terrifying attacks. It is important to hire the right lawyer who knows how to gather important evidence before it disappears, explain to you your rights, and get you what you deserve.

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