A lot of people in Kentucky have dogs, and most of them are responsible pet owners. They feed their animals, take them to the vet when they are sick, and provide adequate space and exercise for them. They fence in their yards or use a leash or tie system that allows the animal to be outside without endangering others. Sadly, not everyone is so responsible.

Some people let their dogs run loose on public lands, from sidewalks to parks. Other pet owners may not properly train their dogs. Either of those scenarios could easily result in an innocent person suffering a dog bite attack. When that happens, the dog's owner becomes liable for the damage the animal causes.

Kentucky laws hold dog owners responsible

Regardless of whether or not the dog has been aggressive in the past, the owner bears responsibility for any property damage or injuries the dog causes. To protect themselves and others, dog owners should take steps to protect the public. These include restraining the dog or keeping it out of the home when children visit.

Failing to properly train and restrain a dog can result in serious injuries in a matter of seconds. When that happens, the victim of the attack has the right to seek compensation, either through an insurance claim or by a personal injury lawsuit.

Dog bites can cause long-term damage to victims

While some dog bites simply need careful cleaning and bandaging, much more serious injuries are also possible. Depending on the size of the dog and the location of the bite, dog bite attacks can even prove fatal. A bite to a tendon, such as in the hands or the ankles, could cause mobility issues or keep someone from working. Sometimes, dogs can even break bones.

When the victims are young children, those injuries can leave lasting, visible scars. Bites on the face and neck, in particular, can leave a child disfigured. That may require cosmetic surgery to correct. Unlike with adults, however, children will need ongoing corrective procedures as they grow in cases of severe damage.

Victims of dog bite attacks may also develop phobias or even post traumatic stress. Counseling or professional therapy may be necessary for a full recovery. Paying for that, in addition to medical care, can place a major burden on the victim.

Dog bite victims have a right to seek compensation

Every situation is unique, but many victims of dog bites can hold the owner of the animal accountable. Kentucky law protects victims from the inaction or negligence of animal owners. Victims can pursue compensation for financial losses, such as medical expenses and lost wages, as well as anticipated future expenses (such as ongoing counseling) related to the attack.

In some cases where a dog bite attack happens on rented land, the courts may hold the landlord responsible for allowing a vicious dog to live on the property. Many tenants do not have insurance, so this ensures that some kind of property liability insurance policy applies to the situation.

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