dog bite

If you have been injured in a dog bite attack, the El Paso dog bite attorneys at the Law Offices of Michael J. Gopin, PLLC can help you seek justice and compensation. For more than 30 years, our lawyers have fought for the rights of those injured in unprovoked pet attacks and other personal injury incidents. We are ready to put our experience to work for you.

You should never have to pay for medical expenses and other unexpected costs if someone else’s dog bites you. Nor should you have to suffer silently with the emotional trauma and post-traumatic stress that often comes after a vicious attack. Let us help you recover the money you need to get the treatment you deserve. Call us or reach out to our dog bite lawyers in El Paso online for a free consultation today.

What Should I Do After a Dog Bite?

If a family member, friend, neighbor, or stranger’s dog bit you, take the following steps right away to protect yourself:

  • Seek prompt medical attention and follow your doctor’s care plan: Ensuring your injuries are professionally assessed and treated immediately can significantly impact your recovery and the strength of your legal claim.
  • Attend all follow-up doctor’s appointments as scheduled: Consistent medical care not only aids in your healing process but also provides a documented trail of your injuries and recovery efforts.
  • Report the dog attack incident to the owner and your local authorities: This not only formalizes the incident but can also help prevent future attacks by the same animal.
  • Write down the owner’s contact and insurance information for reference: Having this information readily available will streamline the process when pursuing compensation for your injuries.
  • Take pictures of visible injuries and damage caused by the attack: Photographic evidence is compelling and can significantly bolster your case by visually documenting the extent of your injuries.
  • Keep all medical bills and other documentation of losses: Organizing these documents will provide a clear record of the financial impact the attack has had on your life.
  • Avoid discussing your case with the dog owner, their insurer, or their attorney: Engaging in discussions without legal representation can jeopardize your case and potential compensation.
  • Avoid sharing information about the attack online while your case is pending: Public posts can be used against you, potentially undermining your claim and affecting the outcome.
  • Contact a knowledgeable dog bite injury lawyer for legal help: A skilled attorney can navigate the complexities of your case, ensuring your rights are protected and you are fairly compensated.

Does Texas Have a Specific Dog Bite Law?

Unlike most states, Texas does not have a statute regarding liability for a dog bite or attack. However, the Texas Supreme Court’s ruling in Marshall v. Ranne in 1974 established the “one-bite” rule for dog bite injury cases in Texas.

Under the one-bite rule, a dog owner is usually not liable for injuries their dog inflicts if the dog has never bitten anyone or acted aggressively in the past. However, if a dog has previously bitten someone or acted aggressively, its owner could be liable for any injuries the dog inflicts in a subsequent attack.

In other words, if a dog has previously bitten or attacked someone, its owner can be held civilly liable for failing to prevent future bites. Additionally, Texas dog owners can face criminal charges if they fail to properly restrain dogs that are known to be dangerous and those dogs injure or kill someone unprovoked.

Who Can Be Held Liable for a Dog Bite in El Paso?

Dog owners are not the only parties who could be liable for dog bite injuries in Texas. Any party responsible for harboring, handling, or controlling a dog may be liable if the dog causes bodily injury or death, whether via a bite or other harmful behavior. This means any of the following parties may be liable for a dog bite in El Paso:

  • Dog owners
  • Property owners
  • Landlords
  • Dog groomers
  • Vets and vet techs
  • Veterinary clinics
  • Animal shelters
  • Dog kennels
  • Boarding facilities
  • Pet stores