Dog Bite Law and Liability for non-bite Injuries

Other than a dog bite, there are many non-bite injuries that can cause injuries to someone.  In California, dog bites fall under strict liability dog bite law. For non bite injuries, a victim can seek compensation from the dog owner under California’s negligence rules.

Some of the ways a dog can severely injure someone include the following:

• Scratching – dog scratches can be minor or severe deep wounds.

• Tripping – a dog can chase someone causing the victim to trip and sprain an ankle or fracture an ankle.

• Jumping on someone – a dog can jump on someone causing the victim to fall down the stairs and hit their head or fracture their leg.

• Pushing someone down – a dog can push someone down causing the victim to hit.

While dog bite’s are on the rise across the nation and tend to get a lot of media attention, there are many victims that sustain injuries from non-bite injuries as well. The Center for Disease control reported that dogs caused 88% of 86,629 fall injuries sustained each year during the time period 2001 to 2006. See CDC. Nonfatal Fall-Related Injuries Associated with Dogs and Cats – United States, 2001-2006.

In California, a claim for these type of non-dog bite injuries can be pursued under the argument that the dog owner failed to take reasonable steps to secure the dog. For example, if a child is at the park playing and a dog jumps on him or her and pushes the child down to the ground causing a head injury or scratches to the child’s face, the dog owner would be liable for failing to take steps to control the dog.

California’s statute of limits on personal injury cases is two years. This means that a victim has two years from the date of the injury to file the case in court to protect the statute. If you or a loved one sustained any kind of injury from a dog, contact the experienced dog bite and injury attorney’s at The Edward A Smith Law Offices for a free consultation at 916-921-6400 or toll free at 1-800-404-5400. More information about our office can be found at and reviews can be found on Yelp and Avvo.

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