“Pit bull” is actually a term that refers to the American pit bull terrier, American Staffordshire terrier, Staffordshire bull terrier and any other dog that has the appearance of any of those breeds. All of these breeds originated from a bulldog and a variety of terriers. Some highly publicized cases of pit bull attacks have lead to legislation in several states, cities and counties. In addition, people who own pit bulls may have to pay increased liability insurance rates. Below we will take a closer look at bite statistics, possible dangers and legislation against the breed.
- Statistics– According to a 2000 study done by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention on dog bite related fatalities there were 238 people killed by dogs over a 24 year period. During this period pit bull terriers or pit bull terrier mixes were said to be responsible for 76, or 32 percent of these deaths. The CDC does state that breed specific attack information is only recorded when there is a fatal bite. These bites represent only .0002 percent of the 4.7 million dog bites that occur each year. Other research shows that fatalities caused by pit bull-type dogs have decreased nearly every year since 2005.
- Legislation– Legislation against owning put bull-type dogs varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction and range in their severity. In some areas a ban has been placed on owning any pit bull-type dog. However, opponents of breed-specific legislation believe that better consumer education and comprehensive yet general dog bite legislation would be sufficient in preventing dog bites and attacks from all breeds of dogs.
- Liability Insurance– If a dog bites, the owner of the dog is held liable. If the victim decides to file a lawsuit the dog owner’s rental or homeowners insurance provide coverage for the owner. However, some insurance companies increase their rates if the dog is of a certain breed.
The debate regarding the dangers of pit bull-type dogs is sure to continue. As Connecticut dog bite lawyers we have seen dogs of all descriptions seriously injure their victims. While not every dog bites, when they do the injuries can be serious, even deadly.
If you or your child have been bitten or attacked by a dog please do not hesitate to contact the experienced attorneys at Glass, Lebovitz, Kasheta & Bren for your free consultation.