Ohio Dog Bite Liability+

Ohio has a very strong, almost strict, liability law for a dog attack or dog bite. Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code Section §955.28, an owner, keeper or harborer of a dog is liable for any injury or damage caused by the dog unless trespassing or teasing or tormenting the dog.

Dog attacks can cause serious injuries, especially to a child who could have permanent scarring. In these instances, a plastic surgeon must be consulted and a report prepared which details the scarring permanency and the cost of future procedures to lessen, reduce or eliminate the scarring.

The good news is that many home -owner insurance policies cover the dog owner and provide needed compensation to the victim. Do not trust the insurance company for the dog owner to protect you as the owner’s insurance company has its loyalty to its insured-not you!

Life tables must be consulted to verify life expectancy. Kenneth Knabe, Brown and Szalller’s lead injury attorney, has handled many dog bite cases. He know how to maximize the victim’s recovery by following the steps outlined above and retaining the right medical experts and necessary report information.

Ohio law is protects dog bite victims. Ohio law requires that a report be made of every incident in which a dog bites someone. The report must be made to the local public health commissioner within 24 hours after the incident occurs. The report may be made by anyone with knowledge of the incident, including a physician, a veterinarian, the bite victim or the owner of the dog. The following information must be provided:

  • A description of the dog
  • The location of the attack
  • How the attack happened
  • The name of the victim
  • The name of the dog owner
  • The status of the dog’s rabies vaccination (if known)

The purpose of providing this information is to permit public health officials to investigate the risk of exposure to rabies, to quarantine the dog if necessary, and to ensure that the victim obtains proper medical treatment, if necessary. If you or a loved one was the victim of a dog attack, notify the appropriate public health official. To locate the public health official in your county, click on this link to Ohio Public Health Departments.

Which Dog Breeds are Dangerous?+

The Centers for Disease Control reports that based upon statistics gathered over a twenty year period the following breeds are the most likely to bite someone:

Pit Bulls, Rottweilers, German Shepherds, Alaskan Malamutes, Wolf-Dog Hybrids, Doberman Pinschers,Chow Chows, Great Danes, Saint Bernards, Akitas and Huskies. Bottom line is, any dog can bite! In case of a child never let the child come face to face with the dog on the same eye level. This can agitate any dog and cause a bad aggressive reaction, like biting.

What Duties Do Dog Owners Owe the General Public?

A dog owner in Ohio has a duty to prevent attacks by the dog on innocent victims. That duty extends beyond the dog owner to any person who has control of a dog or permits the dog to be on his or her property. What this means is that should a dog injure an innocent victim, the owner, the person who is controlling the dog at the time, may be accountable for any damages caused by the dog. The legal duty requires the dog owner to take appropriate precautions, including training the dog, keeping it on a leash, confining it to a house or a fenced area, and taking whatever additional steps are necessary to prevent the dog from injuring anyone. This duty is particularly applicable to owners who undertake to care for a grown dog. The fact that the owner is not familiar with the history and background of how the dog was raised is not an excuse. The new owner must watch the dog very carefully, and ascertain how much ongoing supervision and restraint will be required to maintain safe conditions.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a dog attack, contact the experienced lead injury Attorney at Brown & Szaller law firm who will meet with you free of charge, listen, explain your legal options, gather the critical facts the facts, obtain the dog wardens report and help you decide upon the best course of action which could include a plastic surgery consult. Even if you are unsure whether you have a claim for compensation we will discuss the facts of the case and your options and together determine the viability of your case with no up-front charge.

Do You Need a Dog Bite Lawyer in Greater Cleveland, Ohio?+

Yes-damages are paramount. Brown and Szaller has handled numerous dog bite cases in Cleveland, Lakewood and the western suburbs in which it enlisted the services of a plastic surgeon who opined on scars, permanency and the estimated surgical repair costs resulting in favorable settlements. Obtaining prompt medical attention is of paramount importance. If the injury you or a loved one has suffered is serious, it may be appropriate to call 911 and be taken to the hospital immediately. If an ambulance is not necessary, it is still very important that you go to the emergency room that same day. At the very least, see your family doctor as soon as possible.

A critical aspect of any case where an injury has occurred is the investigation of the circumstances surrounding the injury and the preservation of evidence. The investigation typically involves an examination of the scene of the injury while the evidence and memories are still fresh. It is sometimes necessary to notify the dog owner of his or her obligation to preserve evidence or even obtain a court order to ensure that relevant evidence is preserved.

Since a public health is likely to be are involved as well, it is important to contact and establish a relationship with the investigators as soon as practical.

Finally, identifying witnesses, securing their cooperation, and obtaining their statements as to what they saw or heard, as well as background information about the dog, the dog’s owner, and the conditions under which the dog is kept, should also be done as soon as possible.

Because of the importance of a quick assessment of the surrounding facts, an investigation of the circumstances of the injury, and preservation of relevant evidence, you should  retain a qualified attorney experienced in working with Ohio dog bite injuries and knowledgeable about investigations of dog bite injury situations. Through its experience in working with experts in numerous medical specialties, Brown & Szaller can bring tremendous expertise to bear and obtain for you the recompense that you or a loved one deserves.

Local Ordinance on Dog Attacks+

The City of Avon

618.19 DANGEROUS AND VICIOUS DOGS.

(a) For the purpose of this section, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.

(1) “Dangerous dog.” A dog that, without provocation, and subject to the following sentence, has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person while that dog is off the premises of its owner, keeper or harborer or some other responsible person, or not physically restrained or confined in a locked pen which has a top, locked fenced yard, or other locked enclosure which has a top. “Dangerous dog” does not include a police dog that has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person while the police dog is being used to assist law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.

(2) “Menacing fashion.” A dog that would cause any person being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog will cause physical injury to that person.

(4) “Vicious dog.”

  1. A dog that, without provocation and subject to division B. of this definition, meets any of the following criteria:

Has killed or caused serious injury to any person;

Has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person, or has killed another dog;

Belongs to a breed that is commonly known as a pit bull dog. The ownership, keeping, or harboring of such a breed of dog shall be prima facie evidence of the ownership, keeping or harboring of a vicious dog.

(5) “Without provocation.” A dog acts “without provocation” when it was not teased, tormented, or abused by a person, or it was not coming to the aid or the defense of a person who was not engaged in illegal or criminal activity and who was not using the dog as a means of carrying out such activity.

(ORC 955.11(A))

(b) A person who is the owner or has charge of any animal shall not permit it to run at large in the public road, highway, street, lane, or alley, or upon unenclosed land, or permit them to go upon any private yard, lot, or enclosure without the consent of the owner of the yard, lot, or enclosure

(ORC 951.01, 951.02)

(f) Except when a dog is lawfully engaged in hunting and accompanied by the owner, keeper, harborer, or handler of the dog, no owner, keeper, or harborer of any dog shall fail at any time to do either of the following:

Keep the dog physically confined or restrained upon the premises of the owner, keeper, or harborer by a leash, tether, adequate fence, supervision, or secure enclosure to prevent escape;

Keep the dog under the reasonable control of some person.

(g) Except when a dangerous or vicious dog is lawfully engaged in hunting or training for the purpose of hunting and is accompanied by the owner, keeper, harborer, or handler of the dog, no owner, keeper, or harborer of a dangerous or vicious dog shall fail to do either of the following:

While the dog is on the premises of the owner, keeper, or harborer, securely confine it at all times in a locked pen that has a top, locked fenced yard, or other locked enclosure that has a top, except that a dangerous dog may, in the alternative, be tied with a leash or tether so that the dog is adequately restrained.

While the dog is off the premises of the owner, keeper, or harborer, keep that dog on a chain-link leash or tether that is not more than six feet in length and additionally do at least one of the following: keep the dog in a locked pen that has a top, locked fenced yard, or other locked enclosure that has a top; have the leash or tether controlled by a person who is of suitable age and discretion or securely attach, tie, or affix the leash or tether to the ground or a stationary object or fixture so that the dog is adequately restrained and station a person in close enough proximity to that dog so as to prevent it from causing injury to any person; or muzzle that dog.

(h) No owner, keeper, or harborer of a vicious dog shall fail to obtain liability insurance with an insurer authorized to write liability insurance in this state providing coverage in each occurrence, subject to a limit, exclusive of interest and costs, of not less than one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000.00) because of damage or bodily injury to or death of a person caused by the vicious dog.

 

The City of Avon Lake

618.16 DANGEROUS AND VICIOUS DOGS.

(a) For the purpose of this section, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.

“Dangerous dog.” A dog that, without provocation, and subject to the following sentence, has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person while that dog is off the premises of its owner, keeper or harborer or some other responsible person, or not physically restrained or confined in a locked pen which has a top, locked fenced yard, or other locked enclosure which has a top. “Dangerous dog” does not include a police dog that has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person while the police dog is being used to assist law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.

“Menacing fashion.” A dog that would cause any person being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog will cause physical injury to that person.

“Police dog.” A dog that has been trained and may be used to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.

  1. “Vicious dog.” A dog that, without provocation and subject to division B. of this definition, meets any of the following criteria:

Has killed or caused serious injury to any person;

Has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person, or has killed another dog;

Belongs to a breed that is commonly known as a pit bull dog. The ownership, keeping, or harboring of such a breed of dog shall be prima facie evidence of the ownership, keeping or harboring of a vicious dog.

  1. “Vicious dog” does not include either of the following:
  2. A police dog that has killed or caused serious injury to any person or that has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person while the police dog is being used to assist law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.
  3. A dog that has killed or caused serious injury to any person while a person was committing or attempting to commit a trespass or other criminal offense on the property of the owner, keeper or harborer of the dog.

(5) “Without provocation.” A dog acts “without provocation” when it was not teased, tormented, or abused by a person, or it was not coming to the aid or the defense of a person who was not engaged in illegal or criminal activity and who was not using the dog as a means of carrying out such activity.

(ORC 955.11(A))

(b) Except when a dangerous or vicious dog is lawfully engaged in hunting or training for the purpose of hunting and is accompanied by the owner, keeper, harborer, or handler of the dog, no owner, keeper, or harborer of a dangerous or vicious dog shall fail to do either of the following:

While the dog is on the premises of the owner, keeper, or harborer, securely confine it at all times in a locked pen that has a top, locked fenced yard, or other locked enclosure that has a top, except that a dangerous dog may, in the alternative, be tied with a leash or tether so that the dog is adequately restrained.

While the dog is off the premises of the owner, keeper, or harborer, keep that dog on a chain-link leash or tether that is not more than six feet in length and additionally do at least one of the following: keep the dog in a locked pen that has a top, locked fenced yard, or other locked enclosure that has a top; have the leash or tether controlled by a person who is of suitable age and discretion or securely attach, tie, or affix the leash or tether to the ground or a stationary object or fixture so that the dog is adequately restrained and station a person in close enough proximity to that dog so as to prevent it from causing injury to any person; or muzzle that dog.

(c) No owner, keeper, or harborer of a vicious dog shall fail to obtain liability insurance with an insurer authorized to write liability insurance in this state providing coverage in each occurrence, subject to a limit, exclusive of interest and costs, of not less than one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000.00) because of damage or bodily injury to or death of a person caused by the vicious dog.

 

The City of Bay Village

505.19 DANGEROUS AND VICIOUS DOGS.

As used in this chapter, certain terms are defined as follows:

(a) “Dangerous dog” means a dog that, without provocation, has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger, any person, or bites or causes physical harm to another dog, cat or other domestic animal while off the premises of the owner. Physical harm is to be determined by a licensed veterinarian within 72 hours of an attack at the expense of the owner. Dangerous dog does not include a police dog that has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person while the police dog is being used to assist law enforcement officers in the performance of his official duties.

(b) “Menacing fashion,” means that a dog could cause any person being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog could cause physical injury to that person.

(c) “Owner” means any person owning, keeping, possessing, harboring, maintaining, or having the care, custody, or control of a dog or the parents or guardian of a minor owning, keeping, possessing, harboring, maintaining or having the care, custody or control of a dog.

(e) “Vicious dog” (as defined in ORC 955.11 (A) (4) means a dog that, without provocation meets any of the following:

Has killed or caused serious injury to any person;

Has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person, or has killed another dog.

Belongs to a breed that is commonly known as a pit bull dog. The ownership, keeping, or harboring of such a breed of dog shall be prima- facie evidence of the ownership, keeping, or harboring of a vicious dog.

(f) “Provocation” means that any dog was teased, tormented or abused by a person or that the dog was coming to the aid or defense of a person who was not engaged in illegal activity, and whose person or property was in imminent danger of physical harm

505.23 INSURANCE FOR VICIOUS DOGS.

(a) No owner of a vicious dog shall fail to obtain liability insurance with an insurer authorized to write liability insurance in this State providing coverage in each occurrence, subject to a limit, exclusive of interest and costs, of not less than one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) because of damage to property or bodily injury to or death of a person caused by the vicious dog.

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree on the first offense, a third degree misdemeanor on the second offense, and a second-degree misdemeanor on the third offense. Each and every day during such period of noncompliance with this section may be deemed a separate offense.

505.24 RESTRAINT OF DANGEROUS OR VICIOUS DOGS.

(a) No owner or person in charge of a dangerous or vicious dog shall fail to do one of the following:

Keep the dog securely inside of the owner’s home.

Keep the dog in a locked enclosure at least five feet by ten feet, which has a secure top and sides. If the enclosure has no bottom securely attached to the sides, the sides must be embedded into the ground no less than two feet or must have a concrete base with the fencing securely attached or anchored to the concrete perimeter to a depth of six inches. All fencing must conform to the City of Bay Village Building Codes.

Keep the dog securely muzzled, making sure such muzzle does not interfere with the dogs breathing. Also, the dog must be fitted with a proper collar that will prevent the dog slipping out of it or breaking through it, and attach a substantial leash to the collar that conforms to the dogs weight, size and strength, not more than four feet in length which is held in the hand of a person who is of suitable age, size and discretion to control the dog and who is outside with the dog.

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor in the fourth degree on the first offense, a misdemeanor of the third degree in the second offense and a misdemeanor of the second degree on the third offense.

505.27 PHYSICAL HARM BY DANGEROUS OR VICIOUS DOGS.

(a) No person, being the owner or having the care, custody or control of any dangerous or vicious dog within the City, shall allow such a dog to cause physical harm to any person, except in defense of such owner’s person or property, or to cause physical harm to another dog, cat, or other domestic animal.

(b) Lack of intent on the part of such person to allow such dog to injure another, or the lack of knowledge of the violent propensities of such dog, is not defense to a violation of this section.

(c) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree.

 

The City of Brooklyn

505.29 DANGEROUS AND VICIOUS DOGS.

(a) As used in this section:

  1. “Dangerous dog” means a dog that, without provocation, and subject to subsection (a)(1)B. hereof, has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person, while that dog is off the premises of its owner, keeper or harborer or some other responsible person, or not physically restrained or confined in a locked pen which has a top, locked fence yard other locked enclosure which has a top.

“Menacing fashion” means a dog that would cause any person being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog will cause physical injury to that person.

  1. “Vicious dog” means a dog that, without provocation and subject to subsection (a)(4)B. hereof, meets any of the following:

Has killed or caused serious injury to any persons;

Has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury to any person, or has killed another dog;

Is a pit bull terrier, the ownership, keeping or harboring of such dog shall be prima-facie evidence of the ownership, keeping or harboring of a vicious dog.

  1. “Pit bull terrier” as used herein includes, but is not limited to, any American Pit Bull Terrier, any Bull Terrier, any Staffordshire Bull Terrier or American Staffordshire Terrier breed of dog, or any mixed breed of dog which contains as an element of its breeding the breed of American Pit Bull Terrier, Bull Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier or American Staffordshire Terrier as to be identifiable as partially of the breed of American Pit Bull Terrier, Bull Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier or American Staffordshire Terrier.

(5) “Without provocation” means that a dog was not teased, tormented or abused by a person, or that the dog was not coming to the aid or the defense of a person who was not engaged in illegal criminal activity and who was not using the dog as a means of carrying out such activity.

(b) Except when a dangerous or vicious dog is lawfully engaged in hunting or training for the purpose of hunting and is accompanied by the owner, keeper, or handler of the dog, no owner, keeper, or harborer of a dangerous or vicious dog shall fail to do either of the following:

While that dog is on the premises of the owner, keeper, or harborer, securely confine it at all times in a building, in a locked pen that has a top, locked fenced yard or other locked enclosure that has a top, except that a dangerous dog may, in the alternative, be tied with a leash or a tether so that the dog is adequately restrained;

While that dog is off the premises of the owner, keeper or harborer, keep that dog on a chain-link leash or tether that is not more than six feet in length and additionally do at least one of the following:

  1. Keep that dog in a locked pen that has a top, locked fence yard or other locked enclosure that has a top;
  2. Have the leash or tether controlled by a person who is of suitable age and discretion or securely attach, tie or affix the leash or tether to the ground or stationary object or fixture so that the dog is adequately restrained and station such a person in close enough proximity to that dog so as to prevent it from causing injury to any person;
  3. Muzzle that dog.

(c) No owner, keeper or harborer of a vicious dog shall fail to obtain liability insurance with an insurer authorized to write liability insurance in this State providing coverage in each occurrence, subject to a limit, exclusive of interest and costs, of not less than one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) because of damage or bodily injury to or death of a person caused by the vicious dog.

 

The City of Cleveland

Chapter 604 — Vicious Dogs

604.01 Definitions

(b) “Dangerous Dog” means a dog that, without provocation, has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person, while that dog is off the premises of its owner, keeper, or harborer and not under the reasonable control of its owner, keeper, harborer, or some other responsible person or not physically restrained or confined in a locked pen which has a top, locked fenced yard, or other locked enclosure which has a top, or any dog which, on three separate occasions within a twelve (12) month period has been impounded by the City Animal Warden for being unrestrained or uncontrolled off its owner’s, keeper’s, or harborer’s premises.

(f) “Menacing fashion” means that a dog would cause any person being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog will cause physical injury to that person.

(j) “Serious injury” means any physical injury that results in broken bones or lacerations requiring multiple sutures or cosmetic surgery.

(k) “Vicious dog” means a dog that, without provocation, meets any of the following:

Has killed or caused serious injury to any person;

Has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person, or has killed or caused serious injury to any domestic animal;

Belongs to a breed that is commonly known as a “pit bull” dog, the ownership, keeping, or harboring of such a breed of dog shall be prima facie evidence of the ownership, keeping, or harboring of a vicious dog.

Is owned, kept or harbored primarily or in part for the purpose of dog fighting or any dog trained for dog fighting.

(l) “Without provocation” means that a dog was not teased, tormented or abused by a person, or that the dog was not coming to the aid or the defense of a person who was not engaged in illegal or criminal activity and who was not using the dog as a means of carrying out such activity.

604.03 Control of Vicious and Dangerous Dogs

No owner, keeper or harborer of a dangerous or vicious dog shall fail to do either of the following, except when the dog is legally engaged in training for the purpose of hunting, herding, agility or dog competition events, accompanied by the owner, keeper, harborer, or a handler:

(a) While the dog is on the premises of the owner, keeper, harborer or handler, it must be securely confined indoors, or in a locked pen which has a top, the dimensions of which should be at least five feet by ten feet, and must have secure sides and a secure top. If such structure should have no bottom secured to the sides, the sides must be imbedded into the ground no less than two feet. Such structure must be suitable to prevent the entry of young children and designed to prevent the dog from escaping, or in a locked fenced yard which fence is at least six feet high. Any enclosure must provide protection from the elements for the dog.

(b) While the dog is off the premises of the owner, keeper or harborer, keep it on a substantial collar and leash or tether not exceeding six feet in length and additionally shall do the following:

Keep the dog in a locked pen which has a top, locked fenced yard of at least six (6) feet high, or other locked enclosure which has a top; or

Have the leash or tether controlled by a person who is at least eighteen (18) years of age or securely attach, tie, or affix the leash or tether to the ground or a stationary object or fixture so that the dog is adequately restrained and station such person in close enough proximity to the dog so as to prevent it from causing injury to any person; and

Muzzle the dog. The muzzle must be made in a manner that will not cause injury to the dog or interfere with its vision or respiration but must prevent it from biting any person or animal.

(c) No owner, keeper or harborer of the dog shall permit the unmuzzled dog at anytime to be on a public street, highway, park, building, or other public place.

(d) A dog declared to be dangerous or vicious by violating division (b) of Section 604.01 or divisions (k)(1) or (k)(2) of Section 604.01 shall, at the expense of such owner, keeper, or harborer, be tattooed or microchipped to secure positive identification. (Ord. No. 957-99. Passed 8-11-99, eff. 8-18-99; Reprinted 10-20-99 CR)

604.04 Insurance; Signs; Notification

(a) All owners, keepers or harborers of vicious dogs shall obtain a policy of liability insurance with an insurer authorized to write liability insurance in this state providing coverage in each occurrence, subject to a limit, exclusive of interest and costs, of not less than one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000.00) because of damage or bodily injury to or death of a person caused by the vicious dog. All owners, keepers or harborers of vicious dogs shall provide a copy of the policy for liability insurance to the Animal Warden on a yearly basis.

(b) All persons who presently own, keep or harbor a vicious dog must obtain a policy of liability insurance within thirty (30) days of the effective date of this section.

(c) Upon request of the Dog Warden, the owner of a vicious dog shall produce proof of liability insurance forthwith. Failure to furnish proof of liability insurance may result in the impounding of the dog by the Dog Warden until such proof is furnished.

(d) All owners, keepers or harborers of vicious or dangerous dogs shall have posted and displayed at each possible entrance onto the premises where the vicious or dangerous dog is kept a conspicuous sign, clearly legible, and easily readable by the public warning that there is a vicious or dangerous dog on the premises. Such sign shall be at least eight (8) inches by ten (10) inches in rectangular dimensions and shall contain only the words “VICIOUS DOG” or “DANGEROUS DOG” in lettering not less than two (2) inches in height. Such sign should also include a visual symbol for any children or people who cannot read words.

 

The City of Fairview Park

505.10 DOGS IN PUBLIC PARKS.

(a) No person owning, keeping, or in charge or control of any dog shall permit such dog to go, enter or remain, either with or without a leash upon any public parks within the City, to wit: Bain Park, Bohlken Park, Grannis Park, Nelson Russ Park, Morton Park, and any other City park hereafter established.

505.17 DANGEROUS AND VICIOUS DOGS.

(a) As used in this section:

(1) A. “Dangerous dog” means a dog that, without provocation, and subject to subsection (a)(1)B. hereof, has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person, while that dog is off the premises of its owner, keeper or harborer and not under the reasonable control of its owner, keeper, harborer or some other responsible person, or not physically restrained or confined in a locked pen which has a top, locked fenced yard or other locked enclosure which has a top.

  1. “Dangerous dog” does not include a police dog that has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person while the police dog is being used to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.

(2) “Menacing fashion” means that a dog would cause any person being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog will cause physical injury to that person.

(3) “Police dog” means a dog that has been trained, and may be used, to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.

(4) A. “Vicious dog” means a dog that, without provocation and subject to subsection (a)(4)B. hereof, meets any of the following:

Has killed or caused serious injury to any persons;

Has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury to any person, or has killed another dog;

Is a pit bull terrier, the ownership, keeping or harboring of such a dog shall be prima-facie evidence of the ownership, keeping or harboring of a vicious dog.

  1. “Vicious dog” does not include either of the following:

A police dog that has killed or caused serious injury to any person or that has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person while the police dog is being used to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties;

A dog that has killed or caused serious injury to any person while a person was committing or attempting to commit a trespass or other criminal offense on the property of the owner, keeper or harborer of the dog.

The City of Lakewood

506.01 KEEPING DANGEROUS OR VICIOUS ANIMALS.

No person shall keep, harbor or own any dangerous or vicious animal within the City of Lakewood, or permit any dangerous animal to be kept within the City of Lakewood except in accordance with the provisions in Section 506.04.

506.02 DANGEROUS ANIMALS AND VICIOUS ANIMALS DEFINED.

(a) An animal is deemed to be a dangerous animal when:

It has, without provocation, caused serious injury to a human being or domestic animal; or

It has a known propensity, tendency or disposition, without provocation, to cause serious injury to a human being or domestic animal; or

It has been designated to be a dangerous animal after a hearing by the Director of Public Safety or his or her designee; and

The public safety can be protected by the owner or custodian of the animal exercising reasonable control over the animal.

506.03 PIT BULL DOGS OR CANARY DOGS.

(a) All pit bull dogs and canary dogs (Perro de PresaCanario) are deemed to be dangerous animals even in the absence of a hearing by the Director of Public Safety or his or her designee.

  1. b) As used in this section, “pit bull dog” means any Staffordshire Bull Terrier, American Pit Bull Terrier or American Staffordshire Terrier breed of dog, any dog of mixed breed which has the appearance and characteristics of being predominantly of such breeds, any dog commonly known as a pit bull, pit bull dog or pit bull terrier; or a combination of any of these breeds.

(c) As used in this section “canary dogs” or “Perro de PresaCanario Dogs” also include any dog of mixed breed which has the appearance and characteristics of being predominantly of such breed.

(d) In the event of a dispute as to whether or not a dog is a pit bull dog, a canary dog, or some other breed, the Director of Public Safety or his or her designee shall make the determination with or without a hearing, and the burden of proof that such dog is not a pit bull dog or canary dog shall be upon the owner or custodian.

 

The City of Parma

618.04 DANGEROUS DOGS.

(1) “Dangerous dog” means any of the following:

Any dog which, according to the records of the Police Department, has inflicted severe injury on a human being, without provocation, on public or private property;

  1. Any dog which, when unprovoked, chases, or approaches a person upon the streets, sidewalks or any public or private property in a menacing fashion or apparent attitude of attack; or
  2. Any dog with a known propensity, tendency or disposition to attack unprovoked, to cause injury or to otherwise threaten the safety of human beings or domestic animals.

(2) “Severe injury” means any physical injury resulting in broken bones or lacerations or puncture wounds.

(1) If a dog is determined to be “dangerous”, the owner shall do the following:

  1. Display a sign on his or her premises warning that there is a dangerous dog on the property. This sign shall be visible and capable of being read from the public highway or thoroughfare. In addition, the owner shall conspicuously display signs with a symbol warning children of the presence of a dangerous dog. Such signs shall be visible from the front, rear and both sides of the property.
  2. While the dog is on the premises of the owner or keeper, securely confine it all times indoors or in a locked fenced yard where the dog is secured by a chain-link leash or in a locked pen or other structure. Such pen or structure must have minimum dimensions of five feet by ten feet and must have secure sides and a secure top. If no bottom is secured to its sides, the sides must be embedded into the ground no less than two feet. The pen or structure must also provide protection from the elements for the dog. The owner shall have ten days to construct a pen as described in this section.
  3. While that dog is off the owner’s premises, keep it muzzled and restrained by a substantial chain or leash not more than six feet in length and have the leash controlled by a person who is of suitable age and discretion to adequately restrain the dog.

 

The City of Lorain

505.01 DANGEROUS AND VICIOUS DOGS

(a) As used in this section:

(1) A. “Dangerous dog” means a dog that, without provocation, and subject to subsection (a)(1)B. hereof, has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person, while that dog is off the premises of its owner, keeper or harborer and not under the reasonable control of its owner, keeper, harborer or some other responsible person, or not physically restrained or confined in a locked pen which has a top, locked fenced yard or other locked enclosure which has a top.

  1. “Dangerous dog” does not include a police dog that has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person while the police dog is being used to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.

(2) “Menacing fashion” means that a dog would cause any person being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog will cause physical injury to that person.

(3) “Police dog” means a dog that has been trained, and may be used, to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.

(4) A. “Vicious dog” means a dog that, without provocation and subject to subsection (a)(4)B. hereof, meets any of the following:

Has killed or caused serious injury to any persons;

Has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury to any person, or has killed another dog;

Belongs to a breed that is commonly known as a pitbull dog. The ownership, keeping, or harboring of such a breed of dog shall be prima facie evidence of the ownership, keeping, or harboring of a vicious dog.

  1. “Vicious dog” does not include either of the following:

A police dog that has killed or caused serious injury to any person or that has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person while the police dog is being used to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties;

  1. A dog that has killed or caused serious injury to any person while a person was committing or attempting to commit a trespass or other criminal offense on the property of the owner, keeper or harborer of the dog.

505.02 CONFINEMENT OF DOGS; DANGEROUS DOGS AND VICIOUS DOGS.

(a) As used in this section, “dangerous dog” and “vicious dog” have the same meanings as in Section 505.01 of the Lorain Codified Ordinances. Except when a dog is lawfully engaged in hunting and accompanied by the owner, keeper, harborer or handler of the dog, no owner, keeper or harborer of any dog shall fail at any time to do either of the following:

Keep the dog physically confined or restrained upon the premises of the owner, keeper or harborer by a leash, tether, adequate fence, supervision or secure enclosure to prevent escape;

Keep the dogs on a leash and under the reasonable control of some person when off the premises of the owner;

The running at large of a dog off the premises of the owner is prima facie evidence that it is unconfined in violation of this section.

No owner, keeper or harborer of a dangerous or vicious dog shall fail to do either of the following:

While that dog is on the premises of the owner, keeper or harborer, securely confine it at all times in a locked pen that has a top, locked fenced yard, or other locked enclosure that has a top, except that a dangerous dog may, in the alternative, be tied with a leash or tether so that the dog is adequately restrained;

While that dog is off the premises of the owner, keeper or harborer, keep that dog on a chain-link leash or tether that is not more than six feet in length and additionally do at least one of the following:

  1. Keep that dog in a locked pen that has a top, locked fenced yard or other locked enclosure that has a top;
  2. Have the leash or tether controlled by a person who is of suitable age and discretion or securely attach, tie or affix the leash or tether to the ground or a stationary object or fixture so that the dog is adequately restrained and station such a person in close enough proximity to that dog so as to prevent it from causing injury to any person and muzzle that dog. (Ord. 96-06. Passed 6-19-06.)

505.19 REGISTRATION OF VICIOUS DOGS REQUIRED; FEE AND INSURANCE.

(a) Any person having the custody, ownership, or control of any vicious dog as defined in Section 505.01, must register such dog with the City of Lorain Police Department on a form to be provided by the City. Said form shall require the following information: name, address and telephone number of the dog’s owner; the address where such dog is harbored, if different from the owner’s address; the dog’s sex and color; rabies certificate and tag number (license) and other distinguishing physical characteristics of the dog, as well as proof of public liability insurance as required by the State for such registration.

(b) The registration required by subsection (a) hereof shall be made annually by the person so required and such registration shall be made each year not less than thirty days from the date of the initial registration. The fee for registration shall be fifty dollars ($50.00) per year, for each person required to register any dog irrespective of the number of dogs registered by such person.

(c) Whoever violates the provisions of this section is guilty of a first degree misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000) or imprisonment of no more than six months, or both. Each day shall have constituted a separate offense.

505.20 ADDITIONAL PENALTY FOR OWNERS, HARBORERS AND/OR KEEPERS OF ANIMALS THAT CAUSE SERIOUS PHYSICAL HARM TO ANY PERSON.

(a) No person being an owner, harborer, or keeper of any animal, who is found to be in violation of Section 505.02(b) and (c) Confinement of Dogs; Vicious Dogs; Section 505.03 – Animals Running at Large; Section 505.04 – Leashes; Animal Feces; or Section 505.18 – Wild Animals Prohibited, and while in violation of any of these sections, the animal inflicts serious physical harm to any person, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree. Violation of this Section 505.20 shall be in addition to any other provision of this chapter, and the penalty for violation of this section shall be imposed in addition to any penalty imposed for violation of any other section listed herein.

(b) “Serious physical harm”, as used in this section, shall have the same meaning as is used in Ohio R.C. 2901.01(A)(5), or as that section of the Ohio Revised Code may hereafter be amended.

 

The City of North Ridgeville

618.01 DOGS AND OTHER ANIMALS RUNNING AT LARGE; DANGEROUS AND VICIOUS DOGS.

(a) As used in this section:

(1) “Dangerous dog” is defined as follows:

  1. “Dangerous dog” means a dog that, without provocation, and subject to division (a)(1)B. of this section, has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person or domesticated animal, while that dog is off the premises of its owner, keeper or harborer and not under the reasonable control of its owner, keeper, harborer or some other responsible person, or not physically restrained or confined.

(2) “Menacing fashion” means that a dog would cause any person being chased or approached or whose domesticated animal is being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog will cause physical injury to that person or to the domesticated animal, including but not limited to, chasing, growling or snapping at and similar behavior, and where the menacing dog is at large.

(3) “Vicious dog” is defined as follows:

  1. “Vicious dog” means that, without provocation, and subject to division (a)(4)B. of this section, whether the vicious dog is on or off the property of the owner, keeper or harborer, and meets any of the following requirements:

Kills or has killed or caused serious injury to any person or domesticated animal;

Causes or has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person or domesticated animal; or

Vicious dogs may also be prosecuted as defined at Ohio R.C. 955.11(A)(4)(a)(iii) and regulated at Ohio R.C. 955.22(D). The penalty is contained at Ohio R.C. 955.99(F) and (G).

(e) No owner, keeper or harborer of any dog shall fail at any time to keep it either physically confined or restrained upon the premises of the owner, keeper or harborer by a leash, tether, adequate fence, supervision or secure enclosure to prevent escape, or under reasonable control of some person, except when the dog is lawfully engaged in hunting accompanied by the owner, keeper or harborer or a handler. Failure to so confine or restrain shall be evidence of the animal being “at-large.” (ORC 955.22(C))

(f) No owner, keeper or harborer of a dangerous or vicious dog shall fail to do either of the following, except when the dog is lawfully engaged in hunting or training for the purpose of hunting, accompanied by the owner, keeper, harborer or a handler:

While that dog is on the premises of the owner, keeper or harborer, securely confine it at all times in a locked pen which has a top, locked fenced yard or other locked enclosure which has a top, except that a dangerous dog may, in the alternative, be tied with a leash or tether so that the dog is adequately restrained;

While that dog is off the premises of the owner, keeper or harborer, keep it on a chain-link leash or tether that is not more than six feet in length and additionally do at least one of the following:

  1. Keep that dog in a locked pen which has a top, locked fenced yard or other locked enclosure which has a top;
  2. Have the leash or tether controlled by a person who is of suitable age and discretion or securely attach, tie or affix the leash or tether to the ground or a stationary object or fixture so that the dog is adequately restrained and station such a person in close enough proximity to that dog so as to prevent it from causing injury to any person; and/or
  3. Muzzle that dog. (ORC 955.22(D))

(3) Prior conviction of a dangerous dog shall be prima facia evidence that the animal is a dangerous dog for subsequent violations. Prior conviction as a vicious dog shall be prima facia evidence that the animal is a vicious dog for subsequent violations.

(g) No owner, keeper or harborer of a vicious dog shall fail to obtain liability insurance with an insurer authorized to write liability insurance in this State providing coverage in each occurrence, subject to a limit, exclusive of interest and costs, of not less than one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) because of damage or bodily injury to or death of a person or a domesticated animal caused by the vicious dog, and a copy of such insurance shall be placed on file with the Police Department and shall remain effective as long as the animal remains in the City. (ORC 955.22(E))

 

The City Of Rocky River 

505.11 DANGEROUS AND VICIOUS DOGS; DEFINITIONS

(b) “Dangerous dog” means (1) a dog that, without provocation, has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person, or bites or causes physical harm to another dog or kills another companion animal (as defined in ORC 959.131) while that dog is off the premises of its owner, keeper or harborer and not under the reasonable control of its owner, keeper, harborer, or some other responsible person or (2) belongs to a breed that is commonly known as a pit bull dog. The ownership, keeping or harboring of such a breed of dog shall be prima facie evidence of the ownership, keeping or harboring of a dangerous dog.

(c) “Menacing fashion” means that a dog would cause any person being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog will cause physical injury to that person.

(d) “Vicious dog” means (1) a dog that, without provocation, has killed or caused serious injury to any person or has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person, or has killed another dog (2) “Vicious dog” does not include a dog that has killed or caused serious injury to any person while such person was committing or attempting to commit a trespass or other criminal offense on the property of the owner, keeper or harborer of the dog.

(e) “Without provocation” means the dog was not teased, tormented, or abused by a person, or that the dog was not coming to the aid or the defense of a person who was not engaged in illegal or criminal activity and who was not using the dog as a means of carrying out such activity.

505.15 INSURANCE FOR DANGEROUS DOGS

(a) No owner of a dangerous dog shall fail to obtain liability insurance with an insurer authorized to write liability insurance in this State providing coverage in each occurrence, subject to a limit, exclusive of interest and costs, of not less than one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) because of damage to property or bodily injury to or death of a person caused by a dangerous dog.

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree for the first offense, a misdemeanor of the third degree for the second offense, and a misdemeanor of the second degree for the third offense and each subsequent offense. Each and every day during such period of noncompliance with this section may be deemed a separate offense.

505.16 RESTRAINT OF DANGEROUS DOGS

(a) No owner or person in charge of a dangerous dog shall fail to do one of the following:

Keep the dog securely inside of the owner’s home or transport vehicle.

Keep the dog in a locked enclosure at least five feet by ten feet, which has a secure top and sides. It must have either a concrete base with the fencing securely attached or anchored to the concrete perimeter to a depth of six inches or the sides must be embedded into the ground no less than two feet. All fencing must conform to the City of Rocky River building codes.

While a dangerous dog is off the premises of the owner, keeper, or harborer, it must be fitted with a proper collar that will prevent the dog from slipping out of it or breaking through it, and have a substantial chain link leash or tether attached to the collar that conforms to the dog’s weight, size, and strength. The leash should be not more than six feet in length and should be controlled by a person who is of suitable age, size, and discretion to control the dog. Alternatively, the leash may be securely attached, tied or affixed to the ground or a stationary fixture so that the dog is adequately restrained. In this case, a person who is of suitable size, strength and discretion must be stationed in close enough proximity to the dog so as to prevent it from causing injury to any person or domestic animal. Additionally, dangerous dogs off the premises of the owner must be muzzled in such a manner that the muzzle does not interfere with the dogs’ breathing.

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree, a misdemeanor of the third degree for the second offense, and a misdemeanor of the second degree for the third offense and each subsequent offense.

505.18 PHYSICAL HARM BY DANGEROUS DOGS

(a) No person, being the owner or having the care, custody or control of any dangerous dog within the City, shall allow such dog to cause physical harm or serious physical harm to any person, except in defense of such owner’s person or property.

(b) Lack of intent on the part of such person to allow such dog to injure another, or the lack of knowledge of the violent propensities of such dog, is not a defense to the violation of this section.

(c) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree.

 

Sheffield Village

505.14 DANGEROUS AND VICIOUS DOGS.

(a) As used in this section:

(1) A. “Dangerous dog” means a dog that, without provocation, and subject to subsection (a)(1)B. hereof, has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person, while that dog is off the premises of its owner, keeper or harborer and not under the reasonable control of its owner, keeper, harborer or some other responsible person, or not physically restrained or confined

(2) “Menacing fashion” means that a dog would cause any person being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog will cause physical injury to that person.

(4) A. “Vicious dog” means a dog that, without provocation and subject to subsection (a)(4)B. hereof, meets any of the following:

Has killed or caused serious injury to any persons or domestic animal;

Has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury to any person, or domestic animal;

 

The City of Westlake

505.14 DANGEROUS AND VICIOUS DOGS.

(a) As used in this section:

(1) A. “Dangerous dog” means a dog that, without provocation, and subject to subsection (a)(1)B. hereof, has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person, while that dog is off the premises of its owner, keeper or harborer and not under the reasonable control of its owner, keeper, harborer or some other responsible person, or not physically restrained or confined in a locked pen which has a top, locked fenced yard or other locked enclosure which has a top.

  1. “Dangerous dog” does not include a police dog that has chased or approached in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack, or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person while the police dog is being used to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.

(2) “Menacing fashion” means that a dog would cause any person being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog will cause physical injury to that person.

(3) “Police dog” means a dog that has been trained, and may be used, to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.

(4) A. “Vicious dog” means a dog that, without provocation and subject to subsection (a)(4)B. hereof, meets any of the following:

Has killed or caused serious injury to any persons;

Has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury to any person, or has killed another dog;

Is a pit bull terrier, the ownership, keeping or harboring of such a dog shall be prima-facie evidence of the ownership, keeping or harboring of a vicious dog.

  1. “Vicious dog” does not include either of the following:

A police dog that has killed or caused serious injury to any person or that has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person while the police dog is being used to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties;

A dog that has killed or caused serious injury to any person while a person was committing or attempting to commit a trespass or other criminal offense on the property of the owner, keeper or harborer of the dog.

  1. “Pit bull terrier” as used herein includes, but is not limited to, any American Pit Bull Terrier, any Bull Terrier, any Staffordshire Bull Terrier or American Staffordshire Terrier breed of dog, or any mixed breed of dog which contains as an element of its breeding the breed of American Pit Bull Terrier, Bull Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier or American Staffordshire Terrier as to be identifiable as partially of the breed of American Pit Bull Terrier, Bull Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier or American Staffordshire Terrier.

(5) “Without provocation” means that a dog was not teased, tormented or abused by a person, or that the dog was not coming to the aid or the defense of a person who was not engaged in illegal or criminal activity and who was not using the dog as a means of carrying out such activity. (ORC 955.11)

(b) Except when a dangerous or vicious dog is lawfully engaged in hunting or training for the purpose of hunting and is accompanied by the owner, keeper, harborer, or handler of the dog, no owner, keeper, or harborer of a dangerous or vicious dog shall fail to do either of the following:

(1) While that dog is on the premises of the owner, keeper or harborer, securely confine it at all times in a building, in a locked pen that has a top, locked fenced yard or other locked enclosure that has a top, except that a dangerous dog may, in the alternative, be tied with a leash or tether so that the dog is adequately restrained;

(2) While that dog is off the premises of the owner, keeper or harborer, keep it on a chain-link leash or tether that is not more than six feet in length and additionally do at least one of the following:

  1. Keep that dog in a locked pen which has a top, locked fenced yard or other locked enclosure which has a top;
  1. Have the leash or tether controlled by a person who is of suitable age and discretion or securely attach, tie or affix the leash or tether to the ground or stationary object or fixture so that the dog is adequately restrained and station such a person in close enough proximity to that dog so as to prevent it from causing injury to any person;
  1. Muzzle that dog.

(c) No owner, keeper or harborer of a vicious dog shall fail to obtain liability insurance with an insurer authorized to write liability insurance in this State providing coverage in each occurrence, subject to a limit, exclusive of interest and costs, of not less than one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) because of damage or bodily injury to or death of a person caused by the vicious dog. (ORC 955.22)

(d) If a violation of subsection (b) hereof involves a dangerous dog, whoever violates that subsection is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree on a first offense and of a misdemeanor of the third degree on each subsequent offense. Additionally, the court may order the offender to personally supervise the dangerous dog that he owns, keeps or harbors, to cause that dog to complete dog obedience training, or to do both, and the court may order the offender to obtain liability insurance pursuant to subsection (c) hereof. The court, in the alternative, may order the dangerous dog to be humanely destroyed by a licensed veterinarian, the Dog Warden or the humane society.

(e) If a violation of subsection (b) hereof involves a vicious dog, whoever violates that subsection is guilty of one of the following:

A misdemeanor of the first degree on a first offense. Additionally, the court may order the vicious dog to be humanely destroyed by a licensed veterinarian, the Dog Warden or the humane society.

A misdemeanor of the first degree if the dog causes injury other than killing or serious injury, to any person.

(f) Whoever violates subsection (c) hereof is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree. (ORC 955.99; Ord. 1988-3. Passed 1-21-8

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