Having a dog can be an enjoyable experience for a family. However, it is without a doubt a time consuming responsibility. In addition to routine care, dog owners must be prepared to handle any personality traits the dog may have, such as an aggressive attitude. In Georgia, dog owners can be held responsible for some of the actions of their pets, including dog bites.
Dog bites can happen anywhere. According to the American Humane Association, more than 4.5 million people in the United States suffer from dog bites. About half of the victims are children. Some of the dog owners could be held liable for the injuries the victims suffered.
These attacks could cause severe and permanent damage, especially to a child. The injuries could include scarring and disfigurement, nerve damage and permanent disability. In the most serious cases, the attack could lead to serious bodily injury or even death. If you have been injured by a dog bite, contact a personal injury attorney after seeking medical care.
Atlanta Vicious Dog Bite Attorney
Being attacked by a vicious dog can be a traumatic experience. You should not have to suffer because of the negligence of another. Contact an Atlanta dog bite attorney at The Balams Firm. ReShea Balams will handle each case with the utmost important and make sure the rights of each client are represented.
The Balams Firm represents clients throughout the Atlanta area, including Sandy Springs, Roswell, Johns Creek, College Park, Norcross, Duluth, Smyrna, Milton, Decatur, Brookhaven, Lawrenceville, Alpharetta, Dunwoody and other surrounding cities. Call (404) 445-2005 to schedule a free case evaluation.
Dog Bite Information Center
- Breeds That Most Often Bite
- State Law on Dog Bites
- One-Bite Theory of Liability
- Resources for Dog Bite Cases
Breeds That Most Often Bite
Although most dogs are not vicious, all can be capable of harm. Whether it is a small dog like a Chihuahua or a larger German shepherd, the animal could become dangerous. According to statistics from the Center for Disease Control, some of the most common breeds involved in human bite attacks are:
- Pit bulls
- Siberian huskies
- Saint Bernards
- German shepherds
- Great Danes
- Doberman Pinscher
- Chow chow
- Alaskan malamute
State Law on Dog Bites
In Georgia, you must prove the dog owner is liable for his or her pet’s actions, according to Georgia Statutes Annotated § 51-2-7. For example, if a dog bit you while it was on a leash in your neighborhood, you would have to prove the owner should be held responsible for your injuries.
To prove the dog owner is responsible, the victim would have to prove three things:
- The animal was considered dangerous or vicious
- The owner had some degree of knowledge the animal was dangerous
- The owner carelessly managed the animal or allowed it to go at liberty
If the animal is not on a leash in a city or county that requires it, that also could prove liability. Dogs in Fulton County should be restrained by a leash no more than six feet long, according to a county ordinance. In addition, the animal cannot be tied to an object on any street or public place, such as tied to a tree while the owner enters a store.
One-Bite Theory of Liability
Georgia is one of several states that has a “one-bite” rule for dogs. This means, a person who owns a dog can assume it is not dangerous, until there is some concrete indication to the contrary. This rule allows dog owners to not be punished when its animal bites someone the first time. However, after the bite they are considered to have knowledge the dog is dangerous.
Under the “first bite” or “one-bite theory,” once someone knows his or her dog is generally aggressive and has attacked another person, they can be held liable for any subsequent attacks, no matter the case. If the dog has not previously attacked another person prior to your attack, a dog owner can be held liable for injuries under theories of:
- Premises liability
- Violation of a city or county leash law
- Failure of the owner to stop the attack after it began
- Intentional acts involving the dog
It is important you have a personal injury attorney on your case to help you navigate the complex dog bite laws. You should not have to suffer because another person could not control his or her aggressive dog. The cost of medical bills is a heavy burden. An experienced attorney could help you get the compensation you deserve.
Resources for Dog Bite Cases
Fulton County Animal Services: This county agency takes care of animal issues that occur in Fulton County, including any strays.860 Marietta Boulevard NW
Atlanta, GA 30318
Phone: (404) 613-0358
Atlanta Humane Society: This nonprofit operates a shelter for abandoned and homeless animals.981 Howell Mill Road NW
Atlanta, GA 30318
Phone: (404) 875-5331
1565 Mansell Road
Alpharetta, GA 30009
Phone: (404) 875-5331
Finding the Best Dog Bite Lawyer in the Atlanta Area
If you have been injured by a dog attack because of the negligence of its owner, contact a personal injury attorney at The Balams Firm. ReShea Balams is a skilled Atlanta dog bite attorney would works with clients to ensure the best possible outcome in each case.
Call (404) 445-2005 to schedule a free case evaluation. The Balams Firm represents dog bite victims in Fulton, DeKalb, Cobb, Clayton and Gwinnett Counties.