13 Animal L. 129 (2006-2007)
There Are Not Bad Dogs, Only Bad Owners: Replacing Strict Liability with a Negligence Standard in Dog Bite Cases

handle is hein.journals/anim13 and id is 139 raw text is: ARTICLES
THERE ARE NO BAD DOGS, ONLY BAD OWNERS:
REPLACING STRICT LIABILITY WITH A NEGLIGENCE
STANDARD IN DOG BITE CASES
By
Lynn A. Epstein*
Should the law treat dogs as vicious animals or loving family companions?
This article analyzes common law strict liability as applied to dog bite cases
and the shift to modern strict liability statutes, focusing on the defense of
provocation. It discusses the inconsistency in the modern law treatment of
strict liability in dog bite cases. The article then resolves why negligence is
the proper cause of action in dog bite cases. The Author draws comparisons
among dog owner liability in dog bite cases, parental liability for a child's
torts, and property owner liability for injuries caused by his property. The
Author concludes by proposing a negligence standard to be applied in dog
bite cases.
I.  INTRODUCTION     ......................................... 130
II. COMMON LAW STRICT LIABILITY: A DOG OWNER
FRIENDLY    LAW   ......................................... 132
III. MODERN DAY STRICT LIABILITY: A DOG VICTIM
FRIENDLY    LAW   ......................................... 134
IV. NEGLIGENCE: THE PROPER CAUSE OF ACTION IN
DOG  BITE  CASES   ....................................... 138
V. DOGS AS CHILDREN OR PROPERTY: THE
APPLICATION OF A NEGLIGENCE STANDARD IN
COMPARABLE INJURY CASES .......................... 141
VI. CRAFTING A NEGLIGENCE STANDARD FOR DOG
BITE  CASES  ............................................. 143
VII.  CONCLUSION     ........................................... 145
*  Lynn A. Epstein 2006. Professor Epstein is a Professor of Law at Nova South-
eastern University. She holds a B.S. from Long Island University and a J.D. from Nova
Southeastern University.

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