How can I sue the owner of a pit bull that attacked my cat on my front porch?

Asked over 2 years ago - Cincinnati, OH

The owner of the pitt bull walks her dog everyday without a leash. I came onto the front porch to see the dog shaking my cat like a rag doll. The owner was on the side walk about 50 ft away. After choice words on both parties while the police were being called. She stated "its just a cat, thats what dogs do" while arguing she called someone to come and get the dog and they ran off. THe police came and only cited her for no leash. My cat has a 600.00 vet bills. My cat loss an extremely amountof soft tissue and may not be able to walk on its back foot. The owner was nonchalant about the whole thing. My cat has been with us for 7 years. She is 10 years old. I believe her dog attacked her (my cat ) the first time and had to have 2 surgeries earlier. Just cant prove that.

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Laura Mcfarland-Taylor

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . You can sue her for the amount of the vet bills. The following link will explain the procedure: http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/JCS/interprete...

    Every time you see the dog off its property without a leash, call the police or animal control.

    If we do not have a signed fee agreement I am not your attorney and this is not legal advice.
  2. Keith G Langer

    Pro

    Contributor Level 19

    Answered . The dog's owner is responsible for all the documented damages; that means all your vet bills, prescriptions, etc. This means you must keep accurate records of all those expenses.

    You should have filed a complaint with animal control as well as the police. You will need copies of those reports.

    As for suing the clearly indifferent and irresponsible owner, small claims court is the usual forum. It is designed to be "user-friendly" with simplified procedures.

    Note that you state and county bar associations may have a dial a lawyer or lawyer of the day programs which can assist you.

    However, the real issue is collecting. A dog owner as irresponsible as the one you describe is unlikely to have insurance and will likely have little regard for any judgment you may obtain in court. It is collecting the judgment that is always the difficult issue in these cases.

    The foregoing is for general information purposes and does not establish an attorney-client relationship.

Related Topics

Dog bites and injuries

The most common animal attacks are dog bites and other injuries caused by dogs. The owner is often held liable, although states vary regarding responsibility.

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