Hoboken Legal Beagle – 10/14/2008

10/14/2008:

Today’s (“better late than never”) Beagle segment is about an altercation between two dogs on leashes.

[411 Note: Before we get to the Q&A, there have been a few angry dog attacks in the dog runs the past couple weeks. Seems like at least one of the “offenders” is a grey and white pit bull – just be aware!]

3-legged dog goes haywire on my puppy

hoboken-dog-bite.jpg“Today as I was walking my dogs, I stopped so they could say hi to another woman’s two dogs – a puggle and a 3-legged dog who looked like a Mastiff.

As Ralphie (my little black 8 month old puppy) and the 3-legged dog were sniffing noses, the dog attacks ralphie, latching onto him, picking him up and shaking him back and forth. Finally he let go. Ralphie was screaming so loudly for about 1 or 2 minutes afterwards and finally once I was able to calm him down a bit, I looked up and realized the other woman was walking away.

Once she was about a block away I yelled “Excuse me I need your phone number” and she just said something along the lines like “My dog never bites”, and asked if mine was okay as she continued to walk away. At that time, I didnt know if Ralphie was okay. A nice gentleman stopped with his two dogs to help me out, and when we tried to get Ralphie to walk, we realized he could not put any pressure at all on his front leg. By this time the woman was long gone. I would think that any responsible individual would exchange phone numbers or at least go put the dogs away and come back to help me. And I would at least offer to help out with the vet bills if my dog ever hurt another dog like this woman’s dog did.

I’m not mad at her dog, I understand dog’s can act out for no reason apparent to humans, but her actions (or lack thereof) are what need addressing. I didn’t get her name or phone number or anything before she took off, but Hoboken is a small town, and it’s pretty impossible to hide when you are walking a huge 3-legged dog. I’m not worried about finding her. What sort of legal ramifications can I take once I track her down?

Hoboken411 Legal Beagle says:

Hoboken411 Legal BeagleYou could file a complaint with the Hoboken City Court and ask that the Dog be considered potentially dangerous under NJS 4:19-23 which would at least put it on record that the dog may be dangerous. That law…

“requires the municipal court to declare a dog to be potentially dangerous if it finds by clear and convincing evidence that the dog seriously injures another domestic animal and poses a threat of serious bodily injury or death to a person or poses a threat of death to another domestic animal. But a dog shall not be declared potentially dangerous by a municipal court for seriously injuring a domestic…”

Of course you could try and sue the lady for any damages you sustained such as veterinarian bills, but you would not be able to recover for your own emotional distress for dealing with this situation. Unless the injury to your dog was serious, I dont think you will get satisfaction from either course of action. However, if your dog were seriously injured you should call the police to make a report, call the health department to report the dog and file a small claims complaint against the owner.

The law is clear that a person is responsible for the actions of their dogs but damages are limited to actual costs since a dog is considered property, and, as such, damages are limited to actual out of pocket expenses and nothing for the pain and suffering of the animal.

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36 Comments on "Hoboken Legal Beagle – 10/14/2008"


strand tramp
Member
strand tramp
7 years 11 months ago

moephab, the dog runs are full of worm eggs. your dog swallows the eggs every time he picks up the tennis ball. i hope you guys worm your dogs frequently. round worms, hook worms, even tape worms are in those dog runs. i see poor dogs scooting around hoboken every week. the owners are not taking care of their animals, then your dog gets the parasite.
i’m assuming you guys know heartworm kills.

bradykp
Member
bradykp
7 years 11 months ago

the owner who’s dog did harm to Ralphie is wrong for leaving the scene. Ralphie’s owner is wrong for allowing a puppy to socialize with 2 strange dogs at the same time – that are together. either of the 2 could have seen Ralphie as intruding their territory and acted out. Dogs are fickle. It’s very dangerous for any dog, let a lone a puppy, to socialize with strange dogs.

I grew up with some large dogs, and we were always very careful our Lab sniffed with dogs of any size, keeping his leash tight and not letting him out of our control for a second. if anything happens, both owners need to be able to react immediately, which the owner with 2 dogs probably could not.

i am baffled at the things that are reported in this town with dogs. I guess there’s just a lot of irresponsible owners. It’s even more crucial in a city to be careful, because so much more can go wrong.

moephab
Member
moephab
7 years 11 months ago

[quote comment=”112031″]moephab…..you shouldn’t bring toys (that includes balls) to the dog run. It’s actually your fault.[/quote]
ball was there

NYC1000
Member
NYC1000
7 years 11 months ago

[quote comment=”111854″]Hey andy please take it easy you sound like you’re gonna blow a gasket![/quote]
ha 😉

NYC1000
Member
NYC1000
7 years 11 months ago

I know who she is. They are her daughter’s dogs (or that’s what she told us). We met her walking my dogs in Steven’s park near the dog run. She did tell me that the big dog (the one w/ three legs) was “iffy, and can be protective”. So, it wounds like she does know that he has the potential to bite! Sorry to hear about this. I hope your puppy is ok!

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