Dog Laws In Alabama

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If a previously friendly dog injures someone on its owner’s property, the owner will be held liable. But if a previously friendly dog injures someone in a public place, the owner may not be held liable. Many jurisdictions in Alabama have leash laws, which could make a previously friendly dog’s owner liable for damages if the owner failed to comply with the leash law or other applicable local rules or ordinances.

People injured by previously friendly dogs may only recover actual damages for such as lost wages and injury-related medical bills. They may not recover for pain and suffering. Where it can be proven that an owner was aware of a dog’s aggressiveness and the owner’s negligence caused the injuries, the injured person can recover non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering. In certain egregious cases, punitive damages may also be recovered.

Alabama law allows recovery for dog bites and other types of injuries, such as being knocked to the ground.


In Alabama, the statute of limitations is 2 years from the date of injury. This means you must file a lawsuit against the owner/keeper of the dog within that time, or you will be forever time barred from pursuing a case.


AL Code § 3-1-3 and AL Code § 3-6-1

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The information provided on this website is for general informational purposes only.  The information on this site is not legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is formed through the use of this website.  Laws relating to dog injuries can, and do, change.  To learn your legal rights, contact The Snow Law Firm, or contact a licensed and experienced attorney in your state.


In most states, when a minor is bitten or injured by a dog, the statute of limitation period does not begin to run until the minor reaches the age of 18.  Thus, for example, if an 11-year-old child is bitten or injured by a dog in a state that has a 3 year statute of limitation period within which to file a lawsuit, they will have three years from the date they turn 18 years of age, and would thus have to file a lawsuit before they turn 21 years of age.  In most instances, however, it is recommended that a parent or guardian bring a claim for a dog bite or injury claim on behalf of a minor child before waiting for the injured child to turn 18.


Some states limit the type of damages that a person bitten or injured by a dog can recover.  In most states, however, a person who is bitten or injured by a dog can recover damages that include medical expenses, future medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earnings capacity, physical pain and mental suffering, scarring, permanency of injury, periods of total and/or partial disability and loss of spousal consortium.