Tennessee dog bite laws

Senator Kerry Roberts Suffers Dog Bite Injury

by Staff Blogger | September 4th, 2015

Dogs are typically known as man’s best friend, but sometimes they can turn on humans and pose a serious threat to our health and safety. The Nashville dog bite lawyers at Ponce Law say these risks were made evident by a recent dog attack involving a state senator.

State Senator Kerry Roberts is an avid cyclist and was out on a ride on Weds., Sept. 2, with his wife on Youngville Road in Springfield, Tennessee. The pair encountered a group of dogs, and one of the animals attacked Senator Roberts, causing lacerations and puncture wounds to his leg.

Roberts attempted to fight off the dog but was unsuccessful until a truck scared the dogs away. According to Smokey Barn News, he was then able to seek medical treatment for his injuries, which included  12 stitches to close the bite wounds.

Records indicate the animal was restrained by an invisible electric fence, but officials say the batteries on the system must have failed and allowed the dog to escape.

The Robertson County Sheriff’s Office is continuing to investigate the incident. The attack shows just how important it is to know what to do if a canine attacks. The attorneys at Ponce Law invite you to read our tips on the steps to take when a dog bites.

Girl Offers Safety Advice After Suffering a Dog Bite Injury

by Staff Blogger | July 31st, 2015

A 6-year-old girl from Columbia, Tennessee, is recovering from an attack by a neighbor’s dog last week. Now, she’s sharing a piece of advice for animal owners that our Nashville dog bite injury lawyers couldn’t agree with more.

The little girl’s story begins with a typical summer afternoon playing outside—until a neighbor’s unattended dog approached. The animal lunged and bit her, inflicting a foot and a half of lacerations across the girls face, head, and scalp.

The girl was rushed to a local hospital for treatment and is still recovering. Just days after the attack, the girl told reporters with WKRN 2 News that dog owners should keep their animals restrained at all times because they could hurt others like her.

The legal staff at Ponce Law believes this is a great piece of advice for dog owners. Tennessee law states that a dog must be controlled at all times by it’s owner when in public or on another person’s private property. A violation of these rules can result in criminal charges against animal owners if their pets injure another person while uncontrolled.

The Nashville personal injury lawyers at Ponce Law know that not all dog owners follow the rules. Read what steps to take when a dog bites to help protect your health—and your rights—in the event you’re bitten by a dog.

Some Tennesseans Calling for More Stringent Dog Bite Laws

by Staff Blogger | June 10th, 2015

It’s estimated that as many as 4.5 million Americans are bitten by dogs each year. Research shows that a majority of victims are children. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that a dog has bitten half of all children under age 12.

Despite these numbers, there are very few protections for dog bite injury victims—especially in Tennessee. Tennessee dog bite laws only allow a dog owner to be held liable for damages his or her animal causes if the victim can prove the animal has displayed vicious behavior in the past or the attack happened while the dog was loose on public property.

One woman is calling on lawmakers to create more stringent Tennessee dog bite laws after her child was attacked on two separate occasions. An article from WSMV 4 News explains that the Williamson County woman was visiting family with her 4-year-old daughter when a family member’s canine lunged at the child and bit her cheek. Just months before, a similar incident occurred with a dog owned by the same family member.

The child has now endured hundreds of stitches resulting in thousands of dollars in medical bills that the dog owner cannot be held liable for. Since the dogs were in their home and neither had a history of attacking, the owner is not responsible for damages.

Cases like this not only show the need for stricter laws, but also for the public to be more aware of the dangers approaching a strange dog can pose. That’s why the Nashville personal injury lawyers at Ponce Law encourage you to never attempt to pet a dog without asking the owner’s permission first. Also, it can help to educate yourself and your children about the warning signs an aggressive dog may display prior to biting.

Rabies and Dog Bite Injuries

by Staff Blogger | August 25th, 2014

Dog bites can leave victims with bodily injuries, but they can also lead to infectious diseases. One of the most deadly diseases that can be spread by a dog bite injury is rabies.

Rabies is a viral disease that causes swelling in the brain, which can result in:

  • Uncontrolled salivation
  • Agitation
  • Changes in behavior
  • Hallucinations
  • Death

If an animal suspected of carrying rabies is involved in a dog bite attack, it may be quarantined for up to 10 days. Recently, an animal in Bradley County was taken into custody for evaluation after attacking and seriously injuring a young boy. An article from News Channel 9 states the animal had been a stray, and it is unknown if the canine was vaccinated against the disease.

This is why experts say its so important that you keep your pet’s vaccinations up to date. Rabies shots should be given annually, and clinics may offer the injections for free or at a reduced price.

The Nashville personal injury lawyers with Ponce Law have seen the devastating results of dog bite injuries, and they encourage dog owners to socialize their animals to prevent attacks.