As a dog owner in Alabama, you have a legal obligation to prevent your dog from biting or otherwise attacking a person without provocation. Moreover, Alabama is a strict liability state when it comes to dog bite injuries. This means that a dog bite victim can sue you for compensation and you can be held liable for the damages even if you used reasonable care to manage or restrain the animal.
Training Your Dog and Discouraging Biting
Given that you could be on the hook for a significant amount of money if your dog bites someone, you should consider taking steps to discourage your dog from biting anyone in the first place. One of the best ways to do this is to provide proper training early on in your dog’s development.
When your dog is just a puppy, they will go through a teething process. During the teething process, the dog will lose their incisors and make room in their mouth for new teeth. As this happens, the puppy will go through periods of extreme discomfort and pain. Most puppies respond to this discomfort and pain by increasing their biting tendencies. If the dog is not discouraged from this behavior early on, it can become a dangerous habit that exposes people to risks of dog bite injuries and exposes you to liability in a personal injury lawsuit.
So what can you do to teach your dog that biting is not an appropriate behavior? For one thing, you can socialize your puppy by increasing its interactions with other animals and people. Teaching your dog to deal with others in a non-aggressive way will make it less likely that the dog reacts aggressively during later interactions.
Another good way to train your puppy is to give the animal chew toys while it is teething. This will allow the dog to soothe its pain during the teething process while also ensuring that the dog does not feel compelled to bite people.
Finally, you may have to discipline your puppy when it bites a person. Even if the bite does not cause any pain because the puppy doesn’t have all of its teeth, you need to make sure that the animal understands that biting is wrong.
If you own a dog that allegedly attacked someone, you could be subject to a personal injury lawsuit that threatens your finances. The experienced personal injury lawyers at Salter & Ferguson know what it takes to defend clients in dog bite cases. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation about your case.