Did you recently suffer from a dog bite in Nassau County, NY? Or did your canine attack another person and bite him or her? If so, you will need to learn more about determining liability in case of a dog bite accident.

The comprehensive guide below will detail Nassau county dog bite laws and the difference between strict liability and the one-bite rule. You will also learn what happens if a dog walker gets bitten and the best defense the owner may have in a dog bite case.

Ready to learn more? Read on!

Dog Bite Accident: A Comprehensive Guide To Determining Liability

New York Dog Bite Law

The Nassau county dog bite regulations align with the overall New York state dog bite laws. According to New York state law, a dangerous dog is any dog that attacks a person, domestic animal, farm animal, or companion animal without provocation. 

Additionally, any canine that behaves in a way that a “reasonable person” finds poses a major threat that may lead to serious physical injury or death to people, farm animals, or pets. 

Any adult who suffers from a dog attack or witnesses a canine attack can report it to the local dog control officer or police officer in Nassau county. You may need to describe the situation under oath before a judge. The judge will then determine if there is probable cause that the pet is a dangerous dog. The canine may get taken away from its owner.

Strict Liability Versus the One-Bite Rule

Depending on your state, the dog bite law may entail a strict liability rule or a one-bite rule. A strict liability rule legally holds the dog owner liable for any dog bite, as they failed to restrain the pup from biting the victim. 

However, the one-bite rule means that dog owners are only liable if they believe the dog may bite someone. Essentially, dog owners weren’t at fault due to the first bite. Therefore, a canine is allowed “one free bite” before the owner becomes liable in a court of law.

The state of New York is mixed on the matter and combines the one-bite rule with a limited amount of strict liability. Essentially, the dog owner is liable only for medical or veterinary costs due to the dog bite after the first occurrence. 

Who is Liable When a Canine Bites Someone When Out With a Dog Walker?

Dog walkers should know that they may end up liable for injuries that occur when walking pups outdoors. Some victims may hold the dog walker liable for their injury, so dog walking companies should consider getting insurance to protect employees in these cases.

The companies may also want to have legal representation on hand when dog bite cases occur.

The Strict Liability Rule in Dog Bite Cases

While New York state is a bit lax on the strict liability rule, many states have adopted a strict liability rule to protect victims from dog bites and attacks. Essentially, this means that the dog owner is liable for all damages when his or her dog bites someone, regardless of whether or not the owner made a mistake or did anything wrong.

However, there are two scenarios where the dog owner will not be held liable in a dog bite case.

Two Defenses That Absolve Dog Owner’s Responsibility in Injury Cases

The two best defenses that would prevent the dog owner from having any liability in a dog bite case include the following:

  • The victim trespassing on the dog owner’s property or committing a crime during the incident
  • The victim provoked the dog, such as by pulling on the pup’s tail, kicking the dog, or otherwise trying to injure the pet

Wrap Up

If your dog has bitten anyone and you’re facing legal charges, you will need to know the dog bite laws in New York and how you can effectively defend yourself. If the victim provoked your pup or broke the law during the incident, you may not be liable for the injuries.