Houston Dog Bite Lawyer

Dog Bite Injury Lawyers in Houston

Dog Bite Injury Lawyers in Houston

In layman’s terms, this means that the owner can be found liable when his/her dog bites another person if negligence was a factor.

In order to prove negligence, the victim must be able to show that the owner failed to use reasonable care to prevent the bite, and/or that the owner knew about the dog’s aggressive nature.

It is one of the most terrifying experiences that anyone can face. If you, a loved one, or your child has been attacked by a dog and suffered a dog bite injury, nobody needs to remind you of the alarm and stress it can cause.

Sometimes, unfortunately, victims also have a permanent reminder of the incident with a bite mark that they carry for the rest of their lives.

Negligent owners should be held accountable for their actions – not least to prevent bites from happening to other victims.

Ryan DeHoyos is a dog bite lawyer experienced in such cases in the Houston area. He can help you claim the compensation you deserve and move on with your life with compensation for injuries suffered.

Table of Contents

Who needs a dog bite lawyer in Houston? 

Only the most ferocious attacks from dogs make the news headlines in Houston but every day many silent victims suffer bites due to the negligent actions of the dog owners.

Nationwide, around 800,000 people who are bitten by dogs each year require medical care. That’s over 2,000 a day and it leads to a lot of dog bite lawsuits.

Almost any dog bite can cause a serious injury. It commonly results in injuries to the face and head, with the potential to leave a victim with serious scarring and disfigurement.

The emotional trauma and suffering that comes with this, in addition to physical pain, should not be underestimated.

If you have been injured by a dog in the Houston area, you have a right to seek compensation for financial losses and emotional pain and suffering. 

However, proving liability and claiming the compensation you deserve can be challenging without a lawyer experienced in this type of personal injury claim.

Your lawyer will gather evidence, speak to witnesses, and help you determine the next steps for getting your medical bills paid and making a claim.

Can you sue for a dog bite in Texas?

The Texas Health and Safety Code Chapter 822 deals with the regulation of animals and, specifically “dogs that attack persons or are a danger to persons”.

This is no straightforward matter and much depends on the history of the dog in question and if the owner is aware that the dog is dangerous.

Let’s take a look at the applicable laws in Texas, which should help you decide whether suing for your dog bite injury makes sense.

Texas “dangerous dog” laws

In simple terms, the owners of vicious animals are held strictly liable for damages in Texas. A dangerous dog is defined as one that:

  • Makes an unprovoked attack on a person that causes bodily injury and occurs in a place other than an enclosure in which the dog was being kept and that was reasonably certain to prevent the dog from leaving the enclosure on its own; or
  • Commits unprovoked acts in a place other than an enclosure in which the dog was being kept and that was reasonably certain to prevent the dog from leaving the enclosure on its own and those acts cause a person to reasonably believe that the dog will attack and cause bodily injury to that person.

Strict Liability & Dog Bites in Texas

Although Texas applies negligence rules to dog bite cases, strict liability rules may apply if the dog is classified as a “dangerous” dog. According to the statute, a dangerous dog is defined as a dog that:
 
Makes an unprovoked attack on a person that causes bodily injury and occurs in a place other than an enclosure in which the dog was being kept and that was reasonably certain to prevent the dog from leaving the enclosure on its own;
 
or
 
Commits unprovoked acts in a place other than an enclosure in which the dog was being kept and that was reasonably certain to prevent the dog from leaving the enclosure on its own and those acts cause a person to reasonably believe that the dog will attack and cause bodily injury to that person.
 
If the dog is classified as dangerous and strict liability rules apply, you may not be required to demonstrate the owner’s failure to use reasonable care to prevent the attack.

What is the Texas “One Bite Rule”?

The “one bite rule” means that unless the dog has bitten someone before, the injured person must prove that the dog was dangerous (or could be dangerous) for the owner to be held strictly liable for damages caused.

Under this law, it can be challenging for dog bite injury sufferers to claim fair compensation from owners of dogs that have never bitten anyone before.

To prove negligence, the victim must be able to show that the owner failed to use reasonable care to prevent the dog from biting and/or knew about the dog’s aggressive nature.

However, if the dog is classified as dangerous, the strict liability rules apply and it is not necessary to demonstrate the owner’s failure to use reasonable care to prevent the attack.

Can a dog owner be charged with a crime?

If a dog owner acted with criminal negligence or knew that their dog was dangerous and failed to prevent it from biting someone, he or she could be charged with a crime in Texas, as well as being held civilly liable for damages.

Felony charges may apply if the owner fails to secure a dangerous dog and someone is seriously injured or killed away from the owner’s property – providing the victim did not provoke the attack.

For instance, if there was a previous, unprovoked attack or the owner had been informed by appropriate authorities that the dog was dangerous, the owner could be accused of criminal negligence in the event of a dog bite incident.

Common dog attack injuries

Some pet dogs are extremely powerful and can cause severe injuries to human beings. Dogs in attack mode often naturally go for the face or throat area.

Some of the typical injuries we see in Houston include:

  • Scarring
  • Broken bones
  • Eye injuries
  • Severe lacerations
  • Amputation of fingers or toes

These physical injuries are in addition to the emotional injuries suffered.

What can you claim in dog bite injury cases?

Even if you were trespassing at the time of the dog bite attack (and are therefore held partially liable for your injuries) you can claim compensation under the “comparative negligence” laws in Texas.

As long as you are deemed 50 percent or less responsible for your injuries, you can claim compensation for the remaining proportion that was due to the negligence of the other party.

A dog owner who was unaware that a dog was dangerous may be deemed only partially liable even if you were not trespassing at the time. If the owner was aware that their dog was dangerous and there was no trespassing, he or she will usually be held fully liable for the injuries and other damages caused.

Damages may include the following:

  • Medical expenses, including all care relating to the dog bite injury
  • Expenses for psychological counselling
  • Compensation for the pain endured 
  • Mental anguish, depression, anxiety, etc.
  • Loss of earning capacity if you need to take time off work
  • Disfigurement/plastic surgery requirements 
  • Physical impairment and loss of quality of life

Injured in a dog bite accident in Houston? 

If you have been injured by a dog bite in Houston, you only have a limited amount of time to make a claim. Contact the team at DeHoyos Law Firm, PLLC as soon as possible to understand your rights and your options. 

For a free case evaluation with an experienced Houston dog bite attorney, call (832) 745-4878 or contact us online.

Been injured by a dog bite in Houston, TX?

If you have been injured due to another’s pet and negligence, call us at (832) 745-4878 or schedule a free and confidential consultation about your case today.

Why hire Ryan DeHoyos as your car accident lawyer?

Ryan DeHoyos has years of experience representing dog bite victims in the Houston area. He understands what to look for in such cases and how best to approach claims.

It is advisable to speak to him as soon as possible after your injuries have been checked and treated – while the details are still fresh in your mind. 

You will find that Ryan has a compassionate ear for your story and will listen carefully to establish the facts.  He will then start to gather the evidence required to support your version of events.

The problem in these cases is that what may seem like a clear case of negligence to you may not be so easy to prove if the dog owner refuses to admit liability. The owner may claim that the victim was trespassing at the time of the incident or that they were unaware that the dog was capable of being aggressive.

Texas laws concerning this are complex. Failure to understand these laws can severely limit your ability to win compensation. So, it is in your interest to seek the guidance of an experienced dog bite attorney like Ryan DeHoyos.

The last thing you need when recovering from your injury is having to worry about communicating with a non-compliant dog owner or an insurance company that is reluctant to payout. 
 
We can handle all that for you. We will push for the maximum possible settlement or take the matter to court and let a jury decide. Our excellent track record of settling matters out of court can save delays in receiving your compensation but Ryan DeHoyos is equally adept at trial if it ends up in the courtroom.
 
Ryan’s commitment to helping victims get full and fair compensation for their injuries, financial losses, and emotional pain and suffering saw him named as a Rising Star by Super Lawyers in 2019.
 
He is intimately familiar with the local Houston court system as well as the procedures and laws involved in all types of personal accident injury claims.
Ryan Dehoyos

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Cierra Mcclain
Cierra Mcclain
14:44 25 Aug 21
They are a great law firm. Ryan did not only kept me informed about what was going on, he also made me feel valued the... entire process. I would most definitely use them again.read more
Xochitl Flores
Xochitl Flores
20:11 05 Aug 21
Grateful Dehoyos helped with my case. Always there to answer any questions and very appreciative that he took care of... what was important to me.read more
Arturo Paredes
Arturo Paredes
19:48 09 Jul 21
Great experience! Thank you DeHoyos for being there to help me and my family with everything. I recommend this firm for... any legal services in the personal injury world. The staff was very nice and helpful and very responsive throughout my case.read more
Courtney Kehler
Courtney Kehler
19:35 25 Jun 21
Upfront and honest. I look forward to continuing working with them. Update! Took 3 years to sort out the mess that is... insurance. I absolutely could not have done this without Ryan as he made it absolutely painless. I never had to deal with creditors or the insurance!! Will be using him for any other legal needs.read more
xavier wheeler
xavier wheeler
21:40 21 May 21
This was honestly the most professional experience I’ve had with a law office. They were very understanding,... responsive, and always kept me in the Loop about what was going on with my case. Ryan is not a dream seller. He keeps it realistic and will be straight up and honest on what he can and can’t do. He and his assistant Ashley are a great team and if i ever got in to a situation like this again he is my go to guy.read more
cassandra barker
cassandra barker
13:10 21 May 21
Im so thankful i went through with DeHoyos Law firm, i was in a horrible car accident almost a year ago, never have i... been in something like this. thankfully to DeHoyos everything came out perfect! more than what i expected would, i also thought cases like this wasn't anything but with them my case was well taken cared of, put all his attention into it and made sure i was taken care of the right way.read more
jadegirl105
jadegirl105
23:05 14 May 21
After my hit and run I was referred to Mr. DeHoyos, and at first I didn't want to hire a lawyer to go up against my own... insurance. After some family convincing and research on Mr. DeHoyos I made the call. I am glad that I did. His office staff and himself were wonderful. They took care of everything from the start. Any time I had a question either his staff or himself reached out to me. I never had to wait long to have any questions answered. At one point there was an issue with an appointment and Mr. DeHoyos tried to rectify the problem himself. When I had the pleasure of speaking with him, he never made it sound like I was an inconvenience to him. They kept me well informed of the next step in the process as we went along. In the end I got more than I expected in my pocket! I can't thank him or his office staff enough for everything they did for me. In one of the worst times I've had his staff and himself were there for me.read more
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S t
17:03 07 May 21
I am extremely grateful for this firm's tireless pursuit for justice in my case. They were responsive to all of my... questions and concerns. They provided updates in a timely fashion and I always knew the next step in the process. This firm really takes the time to hear your story and ensure that you receive justice for injuries forced upon you due to the carelessness of someone else. I highly recommend this firm for anyone who has been hurt in an accident. They are definitely different than other personal injury firms.read more
Greg Adams
Greg Adams
16:13 09 Apr 21
Very professional and excellent at letting me know what to expect. Ryan helped me when no one else would and the... insurance company was trying to take advantage of me. I highly recommend Ryan and his team.read more
Jerimy Robinson
Jerimy Robinson
19:13 02 Apr 21
Ryan and his staff were very professional and personable. They resolved my accident case to the best possible outcome.... Would highly recommend.read more
david walker
david walker
19:54 27 Mar 21
My case was fairly simple, but made even easier to deal with by the fact that everything was taken care of over the... phone and through text.This was a huge help considering I live 45 minutes away from his office, everything I wanted out of the case was achieved as then some.Cannot recommend this firm more!read more
Sonia Castro
Sonia Castro
15:12 26 Mar 21
Ryan and his team were very informative and responsive. They did a great job on our case. Ryan is very accessible and... easy to talk to. I would definitely recommend DeHoyos Law if you are injured in a car wreck. These guys set a new standard for accident lawyers.read more
Sanetra Jones
Sanetra Jones
03:37 09 Jan 21
I NEVER NEVER feel compelled to write a review on services or products I buy. So, if you've ever wondered if these... Google reviews are accurate, I can tell you from my experience with Attorney DeHoyos they are. He will fight to make sure you receive everything you deserve. He and his staff are fast and friendly. They keep you up to date on your case with calls and emails. In a field of horses/attorneys, his office is the unicorn! Call him, you won't regret it.read more
L. Minor
L. Minor
15:53 01 Jan 21
My experience with DeHoyos Law firm was a great one. Ryan was already highly recommended by a family member. Sure... enough, this law firm delivered again. Ryan was good to us, and made himself available to us whenever we had any questions. I felt very comfortable with him handling my case. He always kept me in the loop and made sure I understood everything that was going on. His staff is remarkable. Ms Ashley is such a beautiful person. To DeHoyos law firm and staff, Thank you very much for this experience. Hope this year brings you love, joy, and prosperity.read more
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