If my dog bit another dog and person at the dog park, what should I do?

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If my dog bit another dog and person at the dog park, what should I do?

His dog was aggressive befor hand . My dog did not bite until the dog got on top of her. The the owner of the dog tried separating them, thats when she bit him. We exchanged info and he is asking to pay for his dogs bill and his bill.

Asked on August 1, 2012 under Personal Injury, California


Cameron Norris, Esq. / Law Office of Gary W. Norris

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

First, don't admit fault and be very careful about what you say. 

If you have a homeowner's insurance policy--they might cover dog bite claims and that might be a good solution for you.  However, many HOI policies have crazy high deductibles that might not make that worth filing a claim unless the potential claim is very high.

You can try to settle for a lesser amount.  Tell this person that you don't think you are at fault, since they stuck their hand in the middle of things and their dog started the incident.  But, tell them you are willing to give them $xxx in exchange for a mutual release agreement waiving any right to sue.  You can probably find a decent mutual release (settlement) agreement online.

If that doesn't work, then you should hang tight and see if they sue.  If they sue, then you should consult a local personal injury attorney.

Make sure to keep records of conversations--it is best to communicate via email.  NEVER admit fault and try to be congenial if possible.

I would take this as a lesson learned--dog parks are lawsuits waiting to happen.  This is why my dogs and I stick to the backyard and hiking trails while on a leash.

Best of luck.

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