North Carolina’s Dangerous Dog Law & the Hunting Dog Exception

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Charlotte, NC Dog Bite Lawyer

 North Carolina’s big game hunting season is officially underway for the 2014-2015 term. Many hunters employ the use of hunting dogs while out pursuing their game and as the Citizen Times is reporting, the legal use of such dogs may led to violent consequences for the public at large.

· Without provocation, has killed or inflicted severe injury on a person

· Is determined by animal control to be potentially dangerous

· Is owned primarily for the purpose of dog fighting or any dog trained for dog fighting.

NC ST 67- 4.1(a)(1) – (2)

Legally Required Precautions

The law requires that the owner of a “dangerous dog” take reasonable precautions against an attack by their dog. It is illegal for an owner to:

· Leave a dangerous dog unattended on their property unless the dog is left indoors or securely enclosed in a structure designed to restrain the dog

· Permit a dangerous dog to leave the owner’s property line unless the dog is securely leashed, restrained and muzzled.

NC ST 67 – 4.2(a)(1) – (2)

Strict Liability for Owners

The owner of a dangerous dog who attacks is strictly liable for any injuries or property damage the dog causes to a person, his or her property or another animal. Further, the owner of a dangerous dog that attacks a person causing physical injury requiring medical treatment in excess of $100 has committed a Class 1 misdemeanor.

NC ST 67 – 4.3 and 4.4

The Hunting Dog Exception

In North Carolina, dogs “being used in a lawful hunt” are immune from the “dangerous dog” rules that normally require owners to take reasonable steps to prevent their dog from harming another person or animal. So although the hunting dogs in the above story would likely be categorized as “dangerous dogs” because they inflicted severe injury upon their victims, the hunting dog exception saves their owner from any criminal or civil liability toward Ms. Anderson and her dogs. NC ST 67- 4.1(b)(1)

If a Dog Attacks You

If you are the victim of a dog bite or attack, you should first ascertain who the dog’s owner is and then seek medical attention. You may need to be treated for rabies, especially if the dog appears to be a stray. If the physical injury caused by the bite or attack appears severe, you should document with pictures your injury and make sure to keep any medical records that were created during the course of your treatment. You should also report any dog attack to your local animal control unit. The statute of limitations in which to file a lawsuit against a dog’s owner for injuries sustained in a dog attack is three years in North Carolina. If you have been the victim of a dog bite or attack, you may have a personal injury claim against the dog’s owner. Contact the personal injury law firm of Bice Law by calling 877-BICE-877 or submit an online request in order to consult with an experienced attorney today.

Contact the Personal Injury Law Firm of Bice Law

The personal injury firm of Bice Law will examine your case to determine the type and amount of damages that your injury warrants, including payments for medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and any permanent disability.  We’ll determine whether an out-of-court settlement or trial is the best strategy to obtain maximum benefits for you or your family. If you have suffered injury or harm because of someone else’s actions, take the first step to protect your legal rights – contact the personal injury firm of Bice Law serving both North and South Carolina. You only have a limited time after your injury to file a claim, so act quickly.  Call 877-BICE-877 today or submit an online request  to get a free consultation with a  personal injury attorney. We serve families across both North Carolina and South Carolina.

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