A dog owner can be held liable for the pet’s behavior if the victim of bad behavior can prove the owner’s negligence. In order to prove the owner’s negligence, the dog’s owner must prove 3 things:
• The owner had a duty to control that pet canine.
• The owner did not carry out that duty.
• The owner’s negligence caused the victim’s injury.
The law stands firm on the first of those 3 requirements. Few if owners ever try mounting a defense by claiming that a canine’s owner does not have a duty to control that pet animal. Yet some owners have managed to gain freedom from liability by presenting an argument that tried to disprove the existence of the second or third requirement.
Did the owner have reason to suspect that the dog might behave the way that it did?
Some owners have managed to show that their pet’s behavior in the past had given no indication that it would ever perform an act such as the one that had injured some innocent person. For instance, if a dog’s behavior had been exemplary previously, when other service providers had arrived at the home, the owner would have little reason to take added precautions upon the arrival of a computer technician, the poor lad that got bit.
On the other hand, the fact that all owners must control their dogs demonstrates the government’s expectation that owners will not rely on their knowledge or a dog’s past behavior. Still, a service provider that has been bitten could find it hard to show proof of extensive damage, other than medical bills. That would certainly be true if the same provider had an erratic servicing schedule. That is why the victim of a dog bite needs to consult with an Injury Lawyer in Oakville.
Had the owner provided a reasonable amount of control over the pet canine?
Typically, owners do not have to control a dog’s bark or growl, at least to the extent that it might frighten someone. Normally a fence, some chains, plus a warning sign will be sufficient forms of control. Yet in the past there have been times when the court has demanded that the owner even control the pet’s growl or bark. Those were time when the same pet canine had a history of growling and getting upset.
Had the owner been deprived of access to some means of control?
If a dog owner decides that his or her pet should go for walk, then that some owner ought to put the canine on a leash. In fact, the law demands that leashes be used by all owners when walking their dogs. Consequently, only someone that had somehow been robbed of a leash would have much chance to use this particular line of defense.