Our Miami personal injury attorneys report that State Representative Greg Steube, a Republican from Sarasota, has filed legislation that could change Florida’s laws concerning serious dog bites. The bill comes in response to a case arising out of Bradenton involving a dog named Padi. Padi, a Labrador mix, bit off part of a child’s ear over the summer. He was condemned to euthanasia under Florida’s current law that requires all dogs that inflict serious injury to another person be put to sleep. No exceptions exist under the law. Many were outraged by the law’s implications for Padi due to the circumstances of the attack. Apparently, Padi was in his owner’s office when a child, under the care of a babysitter, entered and began throwing toys at the dog. Accounts differ from here, with some believing the child lunged at Padi and others saying he went to grab a toy near the dog. In either case, the incident raised further awareness as to the plight of dogs that bite.
Steube’s bill would offer exceptions in the event the person injured was unlawfully on the property or was abusing the dog. The bill would not actually help Padi, whose case is currently before a local court and could move to the court of appeal.
Dog Bites and Strict Liability in Florida