Pennsylvania Dog Laws Are Being “Aggressively Enforced”
While Governor Tom Corbett focuses on protecting Pennsylvania residents, he also ensures that those residents who can’t take care of themselves are properly cared for – including animals. Last week he announced the Dog Law Enforcement Office is aggressively enforcing the State’s dog laws to protect man’s best friend.
According to the press release, the Dog Law Enforcement Office is focused on “protecting the well-being of dogs and puppies across the state.”
“Pennsylvania has one of the toughest dog laws with the most aggressive protections for adult dogs and puppies in the nation,” said Michael Pechart, acting director of the office. And his office takes enforcement seriously. Of the nearly 300 kennels that were once in operation in the state, just 51 remain.
The Enforcement Office is also working to increase enforcement of dangerous dog laws by citing owners who fail to register their dangerous dogs with the office, and raise awareness of dog licensing requirements. According to the announcement, only 20 percent of the state’s eligible dogs are licensed.
Pennsylvania’s dangerous dog law is meant to keep residents and their pets safe from dangerous and aggressive dogs. Pennsylvania law defines a dangerous dog as one that has attacked, inflicted severe injury to, or killed a human being or a domestic animal without provocation while off an owner’s property. In addition, a dog is considered dangerous if it was involved in committing a crime. By law, an owner or keeper of a dangerous dog cannot allow the dog to be outside the proper enclosure unless the dog is muzzled and restrained by a substantial chain or leash and under physical restraint of a responsible person.
Pennsylvania dog owners have a responsibility to take care of their animal as well as to ensure that no one is injured by their dog. Pennsylvania has strict dog laws to ensure safety of people as well as of the dogs.
Pennsylvania’s Dangerous Dog Law requires the owner to:
- Register the animal with the Dog Law Enforcement Office and re-register on an annual basis
- Confine the dog in a proper enclosure
- Post a warning sign with a symbol that warns children of the presence of a dangerous dog
- Keep the dog muzzled and leashed when outside the proper enclosure
- Spay or Neuter the dog
- Microchip the dog
- Be compliant with court ordered restitution
- Post a bond or purchase and maintain liability insurance in the amount of $50,000 to pay for injuries inflicted by the dog
- Agree not to cancel the liability insurance during the license period unless he/she disposes of the dog
- Sign a statement providing that he/she will notify the Dog Law Enforcement Office, state dog warden and local police if the dog is loose, attacks a human or an animal, dies or is sold/donated
We have listed these statistics before, but they are worth repeating. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that about 4.7 million Americans are bitten by dogs each year. 800,000 people will seek medical attention for the bites, and approximately 386,000 of the injured will require treatment in an emergency department.
Our Pennsylvania dog bite attorneys ask that all dog owners throughout the state take appropriate measures to prevent others from being attacked or bitten by your dog. We also ask that dog owners follow the law and get the appropriate licenses for your pets. The price for a license is minimal, but a ticket for violating the law can be costly.
If you are bitten by a dog, you may be eligible for compensation. Contact an experienced personal injury lawyer to understand your legal rights.
Contact Our Dog Bite Injury Lawyers
The Pennsylvania personal injury lawyers at Munley, Munley & Cartwright make it a point to help those who have been wronged. Our goal is to provide exceptional legal services to our clients. We strive to achieve the highest standard of excellence for the protection of individual rights through team work and the use of our considerable resources and experience.
The law firm of Munley, Munley & Cartwright has substantial experience in the handling of dog bite claims. If you have been bitten or attacked by a dog and feel you may have sustained an injury, contact us online for a free consultation or call us now, toll free, at 1-800-318-LAW1. We can help.
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