Can A Dog Be Put Down For Biting Someone?
It is possible that a dog can be put down for biting someone, but it won't happen in most cases. When a dog is put down, it's usually because there is a history of aggression including the dog having bitten in the past. The exact rules about how dog bites are handled vary by city, county, or state, and it's important to fully understand the laws where you live. It's even more important to never ignore signs of aggression and to take whatever steps you can to prevent your dog from biting.
Do The Circumstances Matter?
The circumstances surrounding the bite do matter, but in some jurisdictions they matter more than in others. Even if you live in a jurisdiction with strict liability laws, it will be taken into account whether the victim had a lawful right to be where the bite occurred and whether the victim provoked the dog.
Being Declared a Dangerous Dog
In some jurisdictions, animal control or the victim of the bite can petition to have your dog declared dangerous. If this goes through, you'll need to muzzle your dog in public and follow other guidelines. You may also have to place signage in your yard warning of a vicious dog. Some locations even require you to move the dog out of the jurisdiction where the bite occurred.
Depending on the severity and circumstances of the incident, your dog may be placed on a bite hold. He'll be seized by animal control and held until a determination is made about what will happen to the dog. At this point, you should hire a lawyer who can help guide you through the process and, if appropriate, fight a dangerous dog determination and/or fight a ruling to euthanize.
Most dogs who bite will not need to be euthanized, but each situation is different and the decision is made on a case-by-case basis. If you've noticed signs of aggression, NOW is the time to work with a qualified animal behaviorist to give you the best chance of avoiding a tragic incident.
How Can We Help?
Rehome by Adopt-a-Pet.com is the safe, reliable, and free way to find a loving new home for a pet. Our dedicated team of experts is here to support you with resources to help you keep your pet when you can and find the perfect new home for your pet when you can’t. Learn more.