Lexington Dog Bites


Central and Eastern Kentucky Dog Bite Lawyer

Dog bite attacks in Lexington, Central Kentucky, and Eastern Kentucky can be severe and can cause long-lasting injuries, disfigurement and even death. If you or a family member have been the victim of a dog bite attack, it is important to seek medical care immediately and contact an injury attorney to determine your rights under Kentucky law. If you have been injured by someone’s dog, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your injuries depending on the specific facts of the attack.
Dog Bite—Attorney in Lexington, KY
Sadly, every day about 1,000 people require emergency medical treatment in the U.S. as a result of dog bites. Dog owners are responsible for their dog’s behavior and must maintain control over the animal. If a dog bites or otherwise attacks an individual, the owner is liable for the conduct of the dog. The Centers for Disease Control has estimated that there are approximately 4.5 million dog bite victims every year in the US. If you were bitten or attacked by a dog, you have the right to seek compensation for your injuries.
According to Dogbite.org, in 2011, the following statistics apply:
31 fatal dog bites occurred in the U.S.
Pit bulls accounted for 71% of the attacks
Although pit bulls account for the great majority of attacks, pit bulls comprise only 5% of the U.S. dog population
In 2011, there were twice as many adult dog bite fatalities than child victims
In 2011, the primary owner of the pit bull was killed in 8 instances
39% of the fatal dog injuries involved more than one dog
Kentucky is a strict liability state which means that a dog owner is liable for a dog bite attack even if the dog has never bitten anyone. KRS 258.235(4) states:

Any owner whose dog is found to have caused damage to a person, livestock, or other property shall be responsible for that damage.

Unlike other states, it is irrelevant in Kentucky whether the dog has bitten someone previously or whether the owner knew the dog had an aggressive personality. As a victim, all you need to prove is:
  • The defendant owned the dog who attacked you
  • The dog bit you while it was in a public place or lawfully on private property
  • The dog attack took place in an area where the owner could reasonably anticipate a person being at any given time
  • You were injured by a dog bite attack

That the dog was a substantial factor in causing your harm
As stated above, the dog owner may be liable for injuries caused by a dog if the owner can reasonably expect your presence where the dog may also be. For example, if a dog owner takes a dog for a walk in a crowded park, and the animal bites someone, the owner is liable since the owner can expect people like the injured party to be in the vicinity. If, on the other hand, the walk is in a secluded area of land, where other persons cannot reasonably be expected, and the owner comes upon someone whom the dog bites, then the dog owner may not be held liable. However, if the owner sees the person far in advance, and makes no effort to steer the dog clear, then the owner may be held liable.

Thus, when the statute applies and when the dog owner has reason to anticipate the dog will be near people like a dog attack victim, strict liability is the standard of liability.

For purposes of KRS 258.235(4), “‘owner,’ when applied to the proprietorship of a dog, includes every person having a right of property in the dog and every person who keeps or harbors the dog, or has it in his care, or permits it to remain on or about premises owned or occupied by him.” For example, when you drop your dog off at a dog grooming salon, both the dog owner and the dog groomer qualify as an “owner” under the statute. In this situation, the dog owner has a proprietary interest in the dog, and the dog groomer was keeping or harboring it while it was being groomed. The statute makes no distinction between primary and secondary owners and would not protect the dog groomer, since by accepting the dog for grooming, the dog groomer assumed the risk of the dog biting someone. The same would apply to anyone who undertakes the care of a dog for another. As such, dog sitters, kennel owners, veterinarians, and anyone else who harbors a dog will be considered the dog’s owner for purposes of dog bite liability.

Kentucky statutes provide for criminal charges in many dog bite injury cases which largely depend on the prior behavior of the dog. However, you may also receive monetary settlements if you have been the victim of a dog attack which will cover your medical expenses and any related injuries.

Whenever there are criminal charges filed against a dog owner, this can help support filing a civil lawsuit. The owner’s negligent actions may warrant compensation for the victim.
When a dog has attacked you, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. This means that the insurance company covering the home or property in which you was attacked may be obligated to pay for your pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, and other out of pocket expenses.
When a dog has attacked you at a business, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries by the business’s insurance policy. This means that the insurance company covering the business in which you was attacked may be obligated to pay for your pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, and other out of pocket expenses.
While Kentucky law places the burden of proof on the dog owner, the dog owner may be able to avoid liability through a number of affirmative defenses. The dog owner may attempt to prove that you were trespassing on their property or provoked the animal While dog owners typically do not have much of a defense, it is important to secure the assistance of a highly trained attorney who knows how to counter these defenses and ensure that you win your case.
1. Past pain and suffering
2. Future pain and suffering
3. Past lost wages
4. Loss of power to earn money in the future
5. Lost job opportunities
6. Past medical bills
7. Future medical bills
8. Vehicle repairs or fair market value
9. Vehicle’s loss of value
10. Loss of spousal companionship
11. Loss of enjoyment of life
12. Travel expenses
13. Working while in pain
14. Hiring someone to do house work
15. Loss of ability or joy in sports, hobbies, and recreation
16. Loss of sleep
17. Cleaning and maintaining your home while in pain
18. Inability or impairment in walking, bending, climbing stairs, using vehicle, etc.
19. Anxiety/Mental Anguish/Depression/Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome
20. Permanent physical impairment
21. In cases where the bicyclist loses their life, survivors may seek wrongful death compensation
22. Punitive Damages
James Clayton Hall | Lexington Personal Injury Attorney
If you have been injured by a vicious dog, contact James Clayton Hall, PLC for a free initial consultation to discuss your options in pursuing a civil suit against the owner. Our attorney works on a contingency-fee basis and does not get paid unless a settlement or verdict is reached. Personal injury legal proceedings are subject to a limitations period, so it is important to contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible to ensure your case is handled expeditiously.
The key to recovering the proper amount of compensation for a dog bite injury is to hire an experienced and knowledgeable dog bite attorney. James Clayton Hall, PLC has recovered thousands of dollars for their injured clients and for the families of victims who were injured. You may be entitled to compensation for hospitalization, doctor visits, medical rehabilitation, pain and suffering, lost income and more. There are no up-front legal fees and no fees at all unless we settle or win your case. For a free consultation in the Central and Eastern Kentucky area, call James Clayton Hall, PLC at (859) ASK-HALL (275-4255).