Statewide, 299 people were killed by animals in the 20-year period from 1999 to 2019.

People across the U.S. have been fatally injured by wild animals including brown bears, sharks, snakes, black bears, alligators, cougars, polar bears, and wolves. In urban areas, however, the most common types of animal attacks are from vicious dogs. In 2020, 46 people in the U.S. were killed by dogs, according to AP News.

How can you get a fair settlement after an animal attack in San Jose?

If you or your child has been seriously injured in a dog attack, your best chance of recovering full compensation is to have an experienced San Jose premises liability lawyer handling your claim. At The Swanson Law Group, we have the knowledge, skills, and resources to effectively pursue the compensation you deserve for a severe dog bite injury. Our talented legal team is committed to serving others who have been victimized or bullied. We take care of our clients and take down insurance companies, combining hope and faith with a no-compromise approach.

Are there leash laws in San Jose?

The San Jose City Council passed new leash laws for dogs on city trails in 2011, as reported by The Mercury News. This ordinance requires people to keep their dogs on leashes no longer than six feet on city trails. It also requires dog owners to keep to the right of a trail while walking with their pets. In open, grassy parks in San Jose, dog owners are still allowed to have their pets on 20-foot leashes, provided the animals do not bother or attack anyone.

How common are dog bite injuries in California?

California led the nation in 2021 for the number of dog bite injury claims, as reported by State Farm. A total of 388 claims were paid out at a value of $23 million. Nationwide, State Farm paid out nearly $162 million for 3,260 dog bite claims at an average of $49,612 per claim. The total payout amount represents a 2.3% increase from the previous year. State Farm attributes this increase to stress, anxiety, and changes in dogs’ routines associated with the pandemic. 

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What is the California law on animal attacks?

State law on dog bites can be found in the California Civil Code under Section 3342. California has strict liability dog bite laws. Pet owners are liable for damages caused by their animals, regardless of whether the dog had bitten before or whether the owner knew or should have known the dog was dangerous. This law applies when a person is bitten either:

  • In a public place such as in a park, on a city trail, or on the street or sidewalk.
  • Lawfully in a private place, including the dog owner’s property. A person invited into the dog owner’s home or a mailman delivering mail, for example, would be lawfully on the property. 

What qualifies as an animal attack injury in California?

When a dog grabs a person with its teeth, that qualifies as a dog bite under the law. It does not matter if the dog’s teeth broke the skin. Dog owners are also liable for injuries other than bites caused by their animals. For example, if a dog escapes from its owner’s property and knocks down a neighbor who is walking to his car, the dog owner may be held liable for injuries sustained by the neighbor in the fall. In this case, however, strict liability does not apply. To recover damages, the injured neighbor must prove that the dog owner was negligent.

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