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DEFENDANT’S Dog Bite – Plaintiff contractor on defendant’s property performing work when bitten by the defendant’s dog – Failure to properly restrain or confine dog – Bite wounds to the hand and wrist.

Allegheny County, PA

In this dog bite negligence action, the plaintiff maintained that the defendant failed to properly restrain her dog while the plaintiff was performing contracting work on the defendant’s property. The defendant argued that the plaintiff was not expected to come to the house at the time the incident occurred, and he attempted to just walk into the premises.

On September 2, ________, the male plaintiff was performing work on the defendant’s property. The plaintiff had been given a key to the premises so he could come and go while performing the work. After leaving the premises to go buy supplies, the plaintiff returned to the defendant’s front door and upon entering, was bitten by the defendant’s dog on the hand and the wrist. The plaintiff maintained that the defendant was negligent in failing to properly restrain the dog, inviting and encouraging worker to walk freely on the premises when the defendant harbored a dangerous pit bull, failing to warn of the dog’s dangerous propensities, and failing to confine or cage the dog. As a result of the incident, the plaintiff suffered dog bites and lacerations to his left hand and wrist, which became infected and caused nerve damage.

In addition, the plaintiff suffered permanent scarring to the hand, wrist, and emotional distress. The defendant denied being negligent, and argued that during the day while the plaintiff was at work, she kept the dog crated in the basement so the plaintiff could come and go, and even gave him a key. The incident in question occurred in the evening when the defendant was home, so the dog was running loose in the house. The plaintiff did not knock or ring the bell to announce his arrival, but attempted to just walk in the house when he was not expected by the defendant.The jury found no negligence on the part of the defendant.

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