If I Hire a Lawyer, Will the Dog that Bit me be Put Down?
When you have been bitten by a dog, a natural reaction is to desire that the dog be put down. Some people wish for this to happen because they are legitimately concerned that the dog may attack again. Others may desire that the dog be put down simply because they seek vengeance on the animal that harmed them or a loved one. Still other people may desperately not want the animal to be put down and they may fear that if they call the police or a dog bite lawyer that the dog will be put down. In reality this is not the case. Hiring a dog bite lawyer will not ensure that the dog is put down. It will also not ensure that the dog remains alive. The truth is that the dog bite lawyer has almost nothing to do with this chain of events. The lawyer’s primary concern will be to help you get your medical bills paid. The lawyer will work with the appropriate homeowners insurance company to compensate you for the variety of evils that have befallen you because of the dog attack.
You can always ask a dog owner to have their animal put down, but the decision will remain theirs until a legal standard has been met. Most owners will understandably want to keep their dogs. A dog can be an extremely loving companion. There can certainly be circumstances under which a safe and loving dog may bite a person or another animal. Perhaps the dog felt threatened, or felt that its owner was threatened? A protective instinct is a very desirable trait in a family pet. A quick motion from a stranger can leave an animal feeling strengthened and painted into a corner. Understanding and mercy should be shown to animals under these circumstances. There can also be circumstances under which the owner should at least consider having the dog put down. Those instances are more extreme circumstances such as when the dog habitually endangers people and other animals. Once a dog has proven a propensity to be violent to others, a decision to get rid of the dog becomes more tolerable. Again, choosing to have your pet put down is an extremely difficult decision and it should only be done as a last resort to protect others.
There is no standard state law in the State of Utah as to the circumstances under which a dog may be forcibly taken and put down. The laws vary from city to city. In St. George, Utah, the law is that any dog may be forcibly taken and put down if it has been documented to be involved in a violent attack on three separate occasions. The laws in St. George are written with the intent to remove dogs that cannot be controlled by their owners and dogs that have shown that they will harm others in the future.
These laws illustrate the importance of reporting dog bites to the authorities. The law will not be able to accomplish its goal of keeping dangerous and uncontrolled dogs away from others if stray dogs and dog attacks are never reported. If a dog has bitten you, contact a dog bite lawyer. He or she can instruct you as to the other necessary steps to take to help you recover from your injuries.