Murfreesboro Dog Bite Lawyers Hold Negligent Animal Owners Responsible

Animal owners must take certain care to protect others near their pets

Owning a pet or domesticated animal can be a great joy, but it is also a major responsibility. In addition to properly caring for the life of another creature, animal owners are required to ensure the safety of others around their animals. If you have been the victim of a dog or other animal bite in Tennessee, our team of Murfreesboro attorneys at Kidwell, South, Beasley and Haley can help you receive compensation and hold the negligent animal owner responsible.

What safety responsibilities does a dog owner have in Tennessee?

In 2007, the state of Tennessee adopted the Dianna Acklen Act (named for 60 year-old Dianna Acklen, who was tragically killed by 3 dogs), which includes provisions for civil liability as pertains to dog bites. Previously, there was not liability for a dog’s first bite; however, this act outlines two major responsibilities regardless of the dog’s history:

  • The owner has a responsibility to keep the dog from running at large (i.e. on a leash or on the owner’s property)
  • The owner has a duty to keep the dog under reasonable control at all times (i.e. in a fenced-in enclose or on a leash)

If a dog owner breaches these responsibilities and the dog injures a person in a public place or while lawfully on the property of another person, the dog owner can be held liable regardless if they knew of any previous dangerous propensity for the dog. There are some exceptions, including:

  • If the dog is protecting the owner from attack
  • The injured person was trespassing on non-residential property
  • The injured person provoked or harassed the dog
  • The dog was in a crate or kennel at the time of the bite

This law does not apply to police or military dogs and other excerptions may also exist. For instance, the rules are slightly different for bites that occur while on the residential property of the owner. Our attorneys  have more than 40 years of experience with animal bite personal injury  cases and can help make sense of the facts and how the law applies to your case.

Contact our Tennessee dog and animal bite lawyers for help with your injury claim

If you or a love one has suffered injuries due to an animal owner’s negligence, we can help you recover damages. Contact us online or at or at 615-893-1331 to speak with our experienced legal professionals for a free consultation.