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Dog fight liability

April 12th, 2005, 09:48 AM
I've been wondering for a while what are the concequences for a dog fight, as far as legalities go. I know dogs are considred property, but that's all. I would assume having prior knowledge fall in there somewhere, like if you knew your dog was aggessive, then you'd be in more trouble.

The reason I want to know is that dogs are unpredictable, and I'd like to know what my recourse could be if my dog was seriously injured by an off-leash and/or stray dog. As well what could happen to me/my dog if he got into a major fight with someone's beloved Yorkie or whatever and ended up really hurting them.

I seriously doubt he ever would, but it's just something I'd like to know for the future.

I live in Edmonton but I would assume the laws are similar everywhere in Canada.

April 12th, 2005, 12:21 PM
It would be provincial legislation and as far as I would guess it hasn't been tested in the courts. Otherwise I am sure that insurance requirements would have been part of the Ontario BSL.

Right now it might be covered under your home liability. That's a guess only.

In other jurisdictions, such as Italy, there is specific liability insurance required for specific breeds.

Incidentally, Italy has had BSL for centuries. Dogs other than working dogs were considered a luxury and so were heavily taxed. So if you had a herding dog in the city you would pay huge taxes. While on a farm it would be tax free.
As far as I can fiqure, certain breeds, like the large guard dogs were taxed so high as to discourage their use in cities.

April 12th, 2005, 04:53 PM
It's a double sided issue. If your dog bites a human or another animal, they can sue you with the worst consequences being that your dog will be put down (rare). But, if the dog is unleashed and yours is (outside a dog park of course), then they can't really fight because they were illegal too.

Inside a dog park supposedly it's At your own risks" but if there is a severely deranged dog, you can go after it.

That's how it is in Montreal, as far as I know.

April 12th, 2005, 08:55 PM
If your dog bites a person you will be obliged to provide proof of rabies vaccination. If the dog is not vaccinated or you cannot provide proof it will probably be confiscated by Health Canada.
The only way to tell for sure if a dog is rabid or not is to wait 10 days after the bite or to euthanize and disect the brain.
Last summer my older golden bit someone. I had to provide proof immediately or the girl would have had to undergo rabies shots. Luckily no skin was broken and it ended there after 10 days of numerous phone calls from Health Canada and the health department where the incident happened.

April 12th, 2005, 09:12 PM
Google was bitten directly below the eye the first day I had him by an off leash Chocolate Lab. The owner directed us to her vet just up the road. She walked in ahead of us and said 'Fred bit this dog. Put it on my account'. We continue to use that vet today so something good came out of it.

An off leash Golden was responsible for the unprovoked attack on one of the Rhodesian Ridgebacks down at the canal. The owner paid for the stitches required to close a tear in the ear. Another owner said he was upset that he had to pay. I'm not sure what exactly was meant by that (he may of just been upset that it even happened) but as the owner of the Rhoady also works for the local humane society she could of made it a lot harder for him if he didn't want to pay.

When there is no doubt the attack was unprovoked then there should be no doubt of who is responsible and of course handling it privately is always the best solution.

That said: I found out when talking the owner of a Chocolate Lab pup that it had recently been bitten below the Fred.

As far as who would be responsible for a fight with a little dog like a Yorkie. In my opinion the large dog owner would be. I own a large dog and simply 'mouthing off' to my dog isn't enough reason to be killed or seriously injured. Somebody most likely loves that dog as much as I love mine.

My dog weighs 80lbs so he is leashed up every time we pass a little dog as to be honest - I don't trust the little ones. It has nothing to do with the temperament of my dog it is just that if something did start there is no doubt that my dog should win just based on the size difference.

April 13th, 2005, 05:10 PM
when my dog was insured, if another dog hurt her they would have to pay the insurance company (no longer insured, was not getting anything for the money i paid, dogs really healthy so wanst worth it). that was mostly good for uncontrolable mad dogs, it kept their owners in fear and they watched their dogs. so insuring your dog has soem advantages.

but if charlie gets hurt in a fight it is no big deal really, im not going to sue anyone. dogs are dogs, and they fight. its part of dog world and doggy society, and in fights dogs do get injured occassionally.

but in 9yrs charlie has been in some really bad fights, and only been hurt once by a friends dog over the ball. that is it. so i do think it is pretty rare for dogs to be seriously injured in dog fights, so its not to big a concerne. and if a dog does bite and hurt in a fight there is something wrong with that dog, it should be all noise and dominance not real violence (most of the time for normal well adjusted dogs)). the really bad fights have been with dogs we dont know, and that is pretty rare.

but if a crazy and known vicious dog hurt charlie for no good reason, i would not only kick the dogs backside in but the humans as well. she is my baby and if anyone hurts her it is my duty to protect her, and i really do. if a person lets their dog be that antisocial a good bout of fisty cuffs is exactly what they deserve and i would not hesitiate. ;)