One of the more gratifying parts of my practice is that I get to represent clients who own dogs.
Sometimes even the most responsible of dog owners find themselves in a situation where their dog breaks a leash, or sneaks out of the back yard and is found running loose in the neighborhood, or maybe their dog breaks loose and gets into a fight with another dog, or god forbid, their dog breaks loose, becomes confused or frightened and ends up biting someone. And now the responsible owner is issued a ticket and finds themselves in court charged with having an “unleashed dog” or what the law refers to as a “dangerous dog”.
These types of cases are governed by local city, town or village ordinances as well as the New York State Agriculture and Markets Law.
Probably the worst thing that an owner can do is to walk into the courtroom by themselves on their first appearance and enter a guilty plea. A guilty plea can detrimentally affect both you and your dog. You’re entitled to a hearing and you’re entitled to defend yourself.
Your dog is member of your family. If you ever find yourself in this situation, your dog would most certainly appreciate it if you consult with an attorney who handles these types of cases.
It’s important to talk with an attorney and learn how you can defend yourself against these types of charges, and more importantly, how you can defend your dog.