Longview Dog Bite Lawyer | Longview Dog Mauling Lawsuit | Longview Dog Attack Attorney
Gregg County Dog Bite Accident Attorney
Dangerous Dog Facts:
- An estimated 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year;
- Approximately 334,000 people are admitted to US emergency rooms annually with dog bite-associated injuries, and another 466,000 are seen in other medical settings;
- An unknown number of other people who have been bitten do not sustain injuries deemed serious enough to require medical attention;
- Almost half of all persons bitten are children younger than 12 years old; and
- People more than 70 years old comprise 10% of those bitten and 20% of those killed.
According to Zoonosis Control Division of the Texas Department of Health, domesticated dogs comprise most the dog bites in any given year. Even more shocking, Texas was the leader in dog bite fatalities in 2007, with seven fatalities stemming from dog bites that year alone. There is a regional Zoonosis office in Tyler located at Texas Department of State Health Services, Zoonosis Control, 1517 West Front Street, Tyler, Texas 75702, (903) 533-5243 for all of your needs and questions.
Responsible Dog Ownership in Longview Definitely Can Reduce Longview Dog Bites
As so many things in life, dog bites can be reduced by what happens in the home. A dog is not always the one to blame in the instance of a dog attack or dog bite injury. Many owners use their dogs for illegal dog fights and these dogs are victimized every bit as much as the victims of their attacks, and they too are often severely injured or even killed in dog fighting rings as they fight for their lives. Negligent and abusive dog owners should be held liable for their actions. A decision to be a responsible dog is a personal decision and one that requires responsibility. There are many places in and around Longview, Texas to have your dog trained for obedience. Dog owners are also able to take their dog to an area designated for dogs to play. Dog parks are there so that the owner can take their dog to an area where they can run around and play in an fenced-in and safe place. Dog parks are a responsible place to take your pet to ensure that when they are running off their leash that they will not run away from you and/or cause harm to a person or another animal. Some Dog Training Facilities and Dog Park locations in the General Longview Area include:
Seven Pines Kennel
3096 North Eastman Road
Longview, TX 75605
Pam's Dog Grooming and Obedience School
2508 Hendricks Street
Gladewater, TX 75647
Somewhere RV Park
Longview Dog Park
P.O. Box 4655
Longview, TX 75606
Dogs should be trained and any sense of aggressive behavior exhibited by a dog should be immediately attended to by the pet owner in order to avoid a future incident. What it boils down to is that if you or a loved one have been bitten, attacked, maimed, or killed by a dog or other animal, you should be entitled to some degree of compensation from the animal’s owner or handler. Contact one of the experienced Longview dog bite lawyers above for a consultation regarding your claim.
Texas’s “One Bite” Rule & Dog Bite Claims Based on Negligence
Texas follows the arcane “one bite rule.” This means that a pet owner is liable when:
- the owner knew that the dog had bitten someone before or had a “dangerous propensity” for biting;
- the bite was caused by the negligence of the person handling the dog;
- the bite was caused by a violation of a leash law, prohibition against dogs trespassing or running at large, or a similar animal control law; or,
- the bite injury was caused intentionally by the owner or person handling the dog.
When it cannot be proved that the dog’s owner or handler knew of the dog’s propensity to bite, negligence can form the basis of a claim. An example of a negligence-based claim could occur when the owner of a dog whose breed is notorious for its violent propensities — such as a pit bull, Rottweiler, or German Shepherd — allows their dog to run loose in a children’s park or other public area without supervision. The dog’s owner will be held liable based on negligence if the dog bites a child in the park.
However, a person does not have to be the dog’s owner to be held liable for a bite victim’s injuries. A child bitten at a day care facility for dogs could, through the child’s parents, make a claim against the pet care center, even though the dog was owned by a third party who was absent at the time of the bite. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a dog bite, you should contact a Longview dog bite attorney to pursue your personal injury claims. Even if the dog has no prior history of aggression and has never bitten anyone before, Texas’s “one bite rule” may allow a Longview dog bite injury lawyer to fight your claim successfully, and you deserve compensation for your injuries.
Longview Negligence Per Se Dog Bite Lawyer
When a statute or ordinance is violated and the violation leads to an injury, this is called negligence per se.
Negligence per se is frequently found in cases of dog bites, dog maulings, and dog attacks, often resulting from a violation of:
- leash laws;
- dog trespass laws; or,
- no “free-run” laws.
Usually, these types of dog control laws and ordinances are only found in large Texas cities; however, Longview has an ordinance requiring that dogs be "restrained" at all times. Furthermore, Longview requires that all dogs over four months of age be licensed with the city officials. If you or a loved one has been bitten or mauled by a dog running loose in violation of the law of Longview or Gregg County, you should contact a local Longview dog bite attorney immediately.
Lillian’s Law (H.B. 1355)
The so-called “Lillian Stiles Law,” sponsored by Senator Eliot Shapleigh and passed in 2007, increases the jail time for owners who fail to secure their dogs in a reasonable manner, resulting in serious bodily injury or death to another. Under the law, a dog owner will be charged with a third-degree felony if their dog causes serious bodily injury to a victim during an unprovoked attack. A third-degree felony is punishable by 2-10 years of prison time as well as a potential fine of up to $10,000. If the victim dies from an unprovoked dog attack, H.B. 1355 would impose a charge of second-degree felony, punishable by up to 20 years in prison. Click here for more information on the passage of Lillian’s Law,
Texas still allows a dog to be chained up, which is not only bad policy, but also dangerous to children and others who are routinely attacked by dogs that have been chained. Lillian’s law helps protect Longview residents from dogs that attack when not reasonably secured and allows Longview dog bite lawyers to sue the dog owners despite lack of previous history of aggression or any provocation from the injury victim. Call a Longview dog bite lawyer today.
Some of Texas' Laws on Dog Bites
Some of the laws are found in the Texas Health & Safety Code, Title 10, Chapter 822 Regulation of Animals:
- Subchapter A General Provisions; Dogs That Attack Persons or Are a Danger to Persons;
Subchapter D Dangerous Dogs;
- 822.041. Definitions;
- 822.042. Requirements for Owner of Dangerous Dog;
- 822.0421. Determination That Dog is Dangerous;
- 822.0422. Reporting of Incident in Certain Counties and Municipalities;
- 822.0423. Hearing;
- 822.043. Registration;
- 822.044. Attack by Dangerous Dog;
- 822.045. Violations;
- 822.046. Defense; and
- 822.047. Local Regulation of Dangerous Dogs
Article V. Fierce or Dangerous Dogs
Sec. 13-22. Regulation of fierce or dangerous dogs.
(a) No person who owns or keeps a dog shall allow the dog to engage in fierce or dangerous conduct.
(b) A dog engages in fierce or dangerous conduct when:
(1) It threatens to attack or terrorizes a person on public or private property or in a public place, or has behaved in such a manner that the person who keeps the dog knows, or should reasonably know, that the dog possesses tendencies to attack or bite persons and occurs in a place other than an enclosure in which the dog was being kept and that was reasonably certain to prevent the dog from leaving the enclosure on its own; or
(2) It attacks and causes serious bodily injury or death to another domestic animal or livestock on public or private property. It is a defense if the dog attacking another domestic animal or livestock was kept in an enclosure that was reasonably certain to prevent the dog from leaving the enclosure; or restrained in a manner that was reasonably certain to prevent the dog from leaving the restraint on its own.
This section shall not apply to dogs that are in the service of law enforcement agencies or guard dogs restrained as provided herein, or as excepted pursuant to the Health and Safety Code 822.003(f), as amended.
(Ord. No. 3141, § 3, 8-8-02, Ord. No. 3728, 11-11-10)
Sec. 13-23. Procedure for impoundment and hearing.
(a) Upon receiving a report concerning a fierce or dangerous dog, the animal control officer or police shall obtain the following information:
(1) name, address, and telephone number of complainant;
(2) date, time, and location of incident;
(3) a specification of the facts and circumstances of the incident;
(4) a description of the dog;
(5) a statement or report describing how the dog either bit the complainant or acted in a vicious manner;
(6) other aggravating facts or circumstances, if any, relating to the incident.
After a statement or report has been obtained, the dog shall be investigated by the animal control officer. Upon a showing of probable cause, a complaint may be filed in municipal court and, if necessary, the dog impounded as a public nuisance. If impoundment of said dog cannot be made with safety to the animal control officer, or other persons, the dog may be destroyed without prior notice to the owner or harborer.
(b) The court, on receiving a complaint under Section 13-23(a), shall set a hearing in accordance with State Health and Safety Code Section 822.0423.
(Ord. No. 3141, § 3, 8-8-02; Ord. No. 3728, 11-11-10)
Sec. 13-24. Guard dogs.
Except for dogs used in law enforcement by law enforcement agencies, it shall be unlawful to place or maintain any dog which is specifically trained to attack, in any area for the protection of persons or property unless the dog is physically confined to a specific area within a building, in a fence, or on a chain of sufficient size and strength to restrain the dog. The area or premises in which a guard dog is confined must be conspicuously posted with warning signs bearing letters not less than two inches high and placed not less than every 25 feet on or adjacent to the structure or barrier which confines the animal. In no event shall less than one warning sign be conspicuously posted.
(Ord. No. 3141, § 3, 8-8-02; Ord. No. 3728, 11-11-10)
Sec. 13-25. Animal control officer authorized to enforce.
The city’s animal control officer, including his or her lawfully appointed assistants and designees, are hereby authorized to enforce the provisions of state law and this chapter regulating dangerous dogs.
(Ord. No. 3141, § 3, 8-8-02; Ord. No. 3728, 11-11-10)
Sec. 13-26. Additional requirements and restrictions for dangerous dogs.
In addition to any applicable requirements set out in state law, the following requirements and restrictions shall apply to any dog in the city limits determined by the city municipal court to be a dangerous dog as defined under state law or this chapter:
(a) the dog must be spayed or neutered within ten days of the determination that the dog is a dangerous dog.
(b) if the dog is subsequently responsible for the death of or serious injury to any person, the dog will be destroyed pursuant to statute.
(c) the owner or person harboring a dangerous dog shall have the dog identified by a numbered tattoo, numbered ear clop, or other identifier approved by the animal control authority, and all identifying information shall be provided to the animal control authority immediately.
(d) the dog shall at all times wear a collar and attached tag marked with an orange color visible at a minimum distance of 50 feet.
(e) the dog, when taken outside the enclosure required under state law and this chapter, must be securely muzzled in a manner that will not cause injury to the animal or impair its vision or respiration, but shall prevent it from biting any person or animal, and must be restrained by a substantial chain or cable leash having a minimum tensile strength of 1,000 pounds and not to exceed six feet in length.
(f) the owner or person harboring such a dog shall post a sign on the premises where the animal is located or kept bearing letters not less than two inches high warning that there is a dangerous dog on the property. The sign, or multiple signs, if necessary, shall be prominently displayed on the property, easily visible and capable of being read from each public street or highway adjacent to the property.
(g) the secured enclosure for the dog, in addition to the minimum requirements for such an enclosure contained in state law, must have a top, must be made of chain link fencing of no more than three inch mesh, must be at least six feet high, and must be posted with signs on each side of the enclosure bearing letters not less than two inches high warning of a dangerous dog, with additional signs for every additional 25 feet of length.
(h) the Environmental Health Division may, as a condition of registration for the dog, the owner or person harboring the dog shall annually attend a class on responsible pet ownership conducted by the city Environmental Health Department or their designee to conduct said class.
(i) the city Environmental Health Division may inspect the enclosure in which any dangerous dog is maintained, without notice, at any reasonable hour.
(j) the city may charge a reasonable fee for the licensing of dangerous dogs, as established by a separate resolution of the city.
(k) new restrictions or requirements as to the regulation of dangerous dogs which were determined to be dangerous dogs prior to the effective date of this chapter, shall become effective as to said animals on the sixtieth day after the passage of this chapter as amended.
(l) the owner of any dog determined to be a dangerous animal by any court or magistrate, must register the animal with the city animal control authority within ten days of bringing the animal into this jurisdiction.
(m) the appeal of any determination by the city municipal court that a dog is a dangerous dog, will be to the County Court at Law, and will follow the provisions for appeal from a municipal court judgment as established in the Texas Government Code.
(Ord. No. 3141, § 3, 8-8-02; Ord. No. 3728, 11-11-10)
Sec. 13-27. Failure to surrender dog.
It shall be a separate violation for any person to refuse or fail to surrender a dog as required by this article, or harbor, hide or secret, transport or secure the transport of a dog subject to impoundment pursuant to this article, for the purpose of preventing its impoundment.
(Ord. No. 3728, 11-11-10)
Family Bystander Mental Anguish Claims
Texas recognizes the right of bystanders to recover damages for mental anguish caused by witnessing an accident, with the following limitations: the bystander must be a parent or child of the victim and the victim must have been killed or severely injured in the animal attack or mauling. Therefore, if you have witnessed a close family member mauled or bitten by a dog, you may want to pursue legal action on behalf of the injury victim as well as your own claims for witnessing such a horrific event. Contact a Longview dog bite lawyer today to discuss bystander and mental anguish claims.
Negligence Based on Failure to Stop an Attack
A Texas dog owner owes a duty to attempt to stop his dog from attacking a person after the attack has begun. This is a civil duty, meaning that the Longview dog bite victim can sue for monetary damages if the dog owner does not attempt to stop the attack.
If you or a loved one have been bitten or mauled by a dangerous dog in Longview or Gregg County, TX, please contact one of the experienced Longview dog bite injury lawyers listed on this page.
What Should You Do if You Have Been Bitten by a Dog?
- Make every attempt to keep the animal in sight, find its owner, and obtain the owner’s contact information, preferably verified by their photo ID.
- Immediately wash the wound out with soap and warm water.
- Make sure that you are up to date on your tetanus shots.
- Seek the help of a physician or visit a local hospital.
- Report the bite to the Longview Planning and Development Services Department (contact information below).
- Seek the help of a Longview dog bite attorney, if necessary, and maintain copies of all medical records and other relevant evidence.
For more information on dog bites and their victims, visit DogsBite.org
Dog Bite Reporting:
If you would like to report a Longview area or Gregg County dog bite or ask other questions pertaining to veterinary public health, do not hesitate to contact the Longview Planning and Development Services Department office at:
A variety of animal training classes and services are offered by the Humane Society of Northeast Texas. The Humane Society of Northeast Texas may be reached at:
Humane Society of Northeast Texas
Contact one of the experienced Longview dog bite lawyers above for a consultation regarding your claim.
Personal Injury Attorneys Serve Longview and Surrounding Cities
Serving clients throughout Central Texas, including Big Sandy, Clarksville City, Diana, East Mountain, Easton, Gladewater, Hallsville, Hawkins, Judson, Kilgore, Laird Hill, Lakeport, Leverett's Chapel, Liberty City, Nesbitt, Overton, Shiloh, Union Grove, Warren City, White Oak, and other communities in Gregg County and Harrison County.
If you or a loved one has suffered an injury, please contact one of the experienced Gregg County dog bite lawyers listed on this page.