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Who is liable for dog bites in Kentucky?

On Behalf of | Dec 5, 2016 | Injury/Wrongful Death |

If your dog has bitten someone or someone’s dog has bitten you, you have probably started to wonder about who is liable in these types of situations. If a bite has resulted in serious injury, the injury is most likely adding more stress to an already stressful situation.

Fortunately, the state of Kentucky has enacted laws that help to determine liability for dog bites.

Strict liability vs. one bite rule

· Strict liability – The state of Kentucky has what is known as a strict liability law. Under this law, a dog owner is liable for all damages caused by their dog. This includes damages to people and/or their property. Moreover, the dog owner is not required to know that their dog has violent tendencies prior to the incident to still be found liable. This is different from many other states that generally adhere to what is known as the “one bite” rule.

· The one bite rule – The one bite rule essentially states that a dog owner must have some prior knowledge of their dog’s aggressive or violent inclinations before an incident occurs to be held liable for damages. This can be very helpful for dog owners whose dogs have never shown any aggression before or have never acted out.


The dog bite laws in Kentucky are generally followed as they are stated. However, exceptions have been made. These exceptions are generally made because of a fault on the part of the individual who was injured. For example, if a person was bitten by a dog while they were trespassing on the dog owner’s property, a court may very well rule in favor of the dog owner. If it is found that the dog owner is liable, there may be criminal charges filed against them.


In addition to being held liable for damages cause by their dog, a dog owner may also be charged with criminal charges. There are instances of misdemeanors, civil charges, and criminal charges. The government may even have grounds to seize the dog. Each charge is different and has different consequences, but they are all serious.

If you have been involved in a situation in which your dog or someone else’s dog has caused damages to a person or their property, there may be grounds for legal action. Regardless of the side of the situation you are on, it is suggested that you seek out the services of a legal professional who is knowledgeable and experienced with these types of personal injury cases. They will be able to assist you as you go about getting the justice that is deserved.


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