You may not want to believe it, but we are here to tell you an ugly truth: Your calm, placid, easy-going dog may bite someone. Most responsible dog owners do not want to believe that their precious pooch would use its teeth to cause harm. It is therefore not unusual for people to be both flabbergasted and distressed when their canine companion chomps the vet.
The good news for you, as an owner, is that you will not be held liable in most cases. As a rule, veterinarians and their staff know that dog, cat and other animal bites are a job hazard that must be accepted. These professionals knowingly take the risk of being bitten with every patient that they encounter.
Let’s use this scenario as an example:
Your dog is on the exam table, happily wagging its tail and accepting the touch of the veterinarian and staff. The veterinarian makes a move to open your dog’s mouth as part of the exam, and your dog reacts with a bite. Who is to blame?
Actually, no one is to blame. Every dog has its limits. For some dogs, it is an ear scope that makes them go wild. For other dogs, having a temperature taken is a clear violation of personal privacy. No matter what sets your dog off, one thing holds true: You are not liable when it happens in the vet’s office in all but the following circumstance.
You fail to disclose your dog as vicious or one that has a history of biting.
It is not atypical of owners with vicious dogs or those who have bitten a human to be embarrassed by their pet’s aggressive behavior. This embarrassment leads owners to keep their dog’s behavior under wraps. If your dog has bitten someone in the past or has been deemed vicious, not disclosing this to the veterinarian could cost you. But why?
Veterinarian’s who know that their patients have a tendency to use their bite more than their bark are able to prepare and protect themselves and their staff. These dogs may be muzzled or even sedated before they are examined. Should your aggressive animal bite any member of the veterinary hospital’s staff and you have failed to disclose its true nature, you can be held liable for damages, including medical bills and lost wages.
If you think that there is any chance that Lassie is going to lose it at the vet’s office, speak up!
If you have been the victim of a dog bite or attack, put the experience of the Auger & Auger team to work for you! We will discuss the details of your case with you at no charge and tell you the best way to proceed. We will not move forward unless we believe you have a case. Contact us today so that we can begin the process of getting you what you deserve. Call now!