Times When Dog Owner Can Escape Injury Liability

In most circumstances, a dog owner needs to remain in control of his or her pet. That means keeping the loved canine on a leash or in a fenced-in area. Sometimes an owner’s wisdom encourages placement of a word of warning. Hence, those that elect to approach the leashed animal get warning. The same warning signal also sends a message to all those that might try climbing over a fence, despite the notices about the presence of a four-legged guard.

Such warnings normally indicate that the leashed or fenced-in dog can be provoked rather easily. Anyone that sees such a warning should re-assess their intended actions. While dog owners normally get held liable for a dog’s readiness to attack strangers, the existence of a provocation allows the same owner to escape injury liability.

Was the dog provoked?

A provocation could take the form of teasing, poking or performing some mean act. In the mind of a canine, a person’s failure to see one man’s best friend gets viewed as a provocative act. In other words, the mere act of stepping on a dog’s paw can be considered provocative. All dog lovers should keep that fact in mind. Naturally, a lover of animals would know to stay clear of a dog’s paws. Still, any pet could react violently to what it viewed as a provocative act. It would not know or care that the person that committed such an act loved animals.

Was the provocation foreseeable?

If an owner feels compelled to give a “yes” answer to that question, then he or she needs to warn others about a pet’s tendency to get provoked easily. That fact explains the reason for the signs at some residences that have a canine behind a fence. The residents living in the dwelling on the other side of that fence do not want to be sued by Personal Injury Lawyer in Oakville for someone else’s dog bite.

Warning signs like that demonstrate a pet owner’s desire to keep others safe from possible harm. A bark can be used as a warning, but only if it comes from an animal that has been put on a leash or put behind a fence. Otherwise, the law will penalize the owner’s lack of foresight.

Did the plaintiff contribute in some way to the provocation?

Exactly who did the provoking? Was it the person that eventually got bit? If someone else performed a provocative act, did the person that got bit contribute in any way to performance of that same act? A jury would seek answers to those questions, before it would issue a verdict that would make the dog owner responsible for the fact that some stranger got bit by a seemingly friendly canine.

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