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Owners of animals have a legal responsibility to prevent their pets and guard dogs from injuring people or damaging property. Whether a dog attacks, a horse kicks, or any other animal causes harm, the owner is responsible.

California is a strict liable State which imposes liability on an animal owner without a finding of fault. It does not matter if the dog is trained to fight or is a service animal, the owner is responsible no matter how careful they are. The responsibility is even more when the owner of the animal has failed to abide by leash laws, leaves a gate open to allow the dog to run out to bite or to protect others from "vicious" and "dangerous" dogs. Downey Municipal Code §4207.5 requires an animal owner to securely confine animal by a strong 6-foot leash and held by the owner or locked in an automobile at all times. Most cities have similar codes. Leash laws and a dog's disposition and history can be relevant the litigation of a dog bite case. 

A dog need not even bite. Damages inflicted by an animal's aggression causing a fall or severe emotional distress may be compensated. When you discover that jumping out of the way of that lunging dog has given you a swollen ankle, it is time to call Orloff & Associates. In some instances, bystanders of a vicious attack may be entitled to recovery. When a dog hurts someone, the owner will usually have to reimburse the victim for medical expenses, time lost from work, and pain and suffering. Homeowners policies and renter’s insurance often cover the responsibility. An experienced attorney will be able to present a case and collect from the owner's insurance policy. 


If you have been bitten by a dog, you are well-aware of how unexpected and savage the attack can be. The attack immediately causes terror and terrible emotions where you may feel that your life is about to end. Attacks ensue with bites which tear flesh and disfigure people, robbing them of their naturally born beauty. The impact is a sudden and shocking act of violence which changes your life forever.

In addition to hospitalization and other medical expenses, you may need the services of a plastic surgeon, a pain management specialist, or a mental health professional to assist with the trauma caused by the dog bite.Depending upon the victim’s injuries, severe animal attacks may require multiple surgeries and substantial future medical care.


When a bite happens, it is sudden and unexpected. However, if you have been bitten or attacked by an animal, you should:

  • Get the names and phone numbers of the dog's owner

  • Get the owner’s liability insurance information

  • Get names and contact information of any witnesses

  • Take photos of the dog and the scene where the attack happened such as an open gate or a hole in the fence that the dog came through

  • Take photos of your immediate visible injuries

  • Make a police report

  • Contact SEAACA Southeast Area Animal Control Authority to report the attack

  • Get medical attention - the animal may be diseased and the bite may cause infection

  • Contact Orloff & Associates APC


AT ORLOFF & ASSOCIATES APC, WE BELIEVE IN OUR CLIENTS AND THEIR CASES. We are confident in the cases we take on, which is why our personal injury cases work on a contingency fee basis. This means that our clients owe no attorney’s fees and will not be required to pay any costs until a recovery is obtained for you in your case. 

If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, contact a Downey car accident attorney at Orloff & Associates APC to schedule a consultation.


At Orloff & Associates APC, we serve all of Los Angeles County, Orange County and the Inland Empire. If you need a personal injury attorney in Downey, we are here to serve you. Every case has a story and the details make a difference. We take the time to document your story from how you were before the crash, through your recovery process and how the crash affected your life. We pride ourselves with honesty, integrity and excellence, helping you to put the pieces back together. Contact us today for a free consultation.