Dallas Dog Bite Lawyer

Dallas Dog Bite Lawyer

Doug Goyen, AttorneyAttorney Doug Goyen is a Dallas dog bite lawyer that handles personal injury cases resulting from dog bites. The Law Office of Doug Goyen has handled thousands of injury cases, including dog bite injuries, and recovered millions of dollars in settlements and judgments since becoming a licensed Texas attorney in 1997. The Law Office of Doug Goyen provides experienced, aggressive, and powerful representation for our clients. 

Prior to becoming an attorney, Doug Goyen worked as an injury claims adjuster for the insurance industry for several years. Attorney Doug Goyen’s experience, training, and ability give him unique tools and knowledge that ensure you receive the best representation for your dog bite injury case.

Call For A Free Case Review (972) 599 4100

Our firm represents people who have been harmed by another person’s animal. In the eyes of the law, it is not the animal’s fault; rather, the owner or person in charge of the animal is liable for the animal’s actions. Dog owners are accountable for their pets. In cities, they are required to keep them from escaping their yards. People must take extra precautions with their dog if the dog has a history of aggression or biting other animals or people. Dog owners are responsible for their animals’ actions if they put their dogs in situations that are dangerous to others.

If you have been bitten by another person’s dog, you will almost certainly need to hire a dog bite injury lawyer to pursue your claim. Some claims are minor enough that you will not require the services of an attorney. Larger cases, due to the amount of money involved, should never be pursued or negotiated without the assistance of an experienced lawyer to help you navigate the legal system and insurance companies that may be involved in your case.

We provide free initial consultations to assist you in determining whether you require the assistance of an attorney for the damage or injury caused by the animal in question.

    5 star review  Mr Doug Goyen took care of all the dealings with insurance companies, my employer and other parties. He was effective and professional through the whole ordeal. Excellent communication and timely... read more

    thumb Peter B

    5 star review  Very efficient staff. I am VERY pleased with this firm.

    thumb Gina Walker

    5 star review  Doug is a great attorney. He took care of my auto accident claim promptly, and answered any questions I had. I also had one of my hospital bills go into... read more

    thumb David Jones

    5 star review  Mr. Goyen helped me take on my own insurance company, the great and mighty Allstate. My prior firm basically dumped me, with a permanent injury, because the case didn’t meet... read more

    thumb Pamala McBrayer

No Fee Unless We Win! Call (972) 599 4100


In some cases, dog attacks can be extremely dangerous. A scared or dominant dog can be ferocious and cause significant harm to a human. It is the responsibility of dog owners to keep their animals under control. If an owner’s dog attacks another person due to the owner’s negligence, the owner is liable for any injuries sustained as a result of the attack.

Every year, millions of people in the United States are bitten by dogs. One in every six people requires medical attention. If you have unpaid bills as a result of an animal attack, you should be aware of your legal rights.


One of the most difficult aspects of dog attack cases is determining who is to blame for the attack and then determining which insurance company (if any) is responsible for the liability claim. Often, the dog is free and the owner does not come forward to claim the animal. The owner will sometimes claim that someone must have opened his gate and let his dog(s) out. Sometimes the dog’s owner is renting his home and does not have “liability insurance” that would cover the claim. The owner of the house who rents to the dog’s owner frequently claims that they had no idea the dog was there or that the dog was dangerous. All of this complicates your efforts to pursue your claim against the dog’s owner for the injuries, harms, and losses you sustained as a result of the attack. You will need an experienced dog bite injury lawyer to identify the issues early in your case so that you can recover from your injuries.


Lawsuits and claims involving animals injuring people, such as dog bite cases, fall into the following categories in Texas.

1) Negligent animal handling.

2) Injuries caused by dangerous domesticated animals

3) Injuries caused by wild animals.

4) Negligence per se (where the dog owner or animal owner has violated a statute such as violation of a leash law, and the animal causes and injury).


To prove a case against someone for negligent animal handling, a plaintiff must be able to prove the following: 1) Defendant was the owner or possessor of the animal; 2) Defendant owed a duty to exercise reasonable care to prevent the animal from harming others; 3) Defendant breached this duty; and 4) Defendant’s breach foreseeably caused the injury. Thompson v. Curtis, 127 S.W.3d 446, 451 (Tex.App.—Dallas 2004, no pet.).

To establish that the defendant owed a duty to exercise reasonable care, the owner or possessor of the animal must be aware of circumstances that could cause an otherwise gentle animal to attack other animals or people. Labaj v. VanHouten, 322 S.W.3d 416, 421 (Tex.App.—Amarillo, 2010, pet. denied). In City of Houston v. Jenkins, 363 S.W.3d 808, 816 (Tex.App.—Houston [14th Dist.] 2012) the training and history of a police dog biting humans proved that the defendant was aware of the dog’s danger.


Duty in Common areas: A landlord owes a duty to a tenant injured by an animal in common areas if the landlord had control over the area and actual knowledge that the animal was vicious. Batra v. Clark, 110 S.W.3d 126, 128 (Tex.App.—Houston [1st Dist] 2003, no pet.).

Duty in a Leased Premises: Landlords have a duty to non-tenants who are injured by an animal on the tenant’s leased property if the landlord had actual knowledge the animal was on the leased premises, had actual knowledge the animal had vicious tendencies and had the ability to control the premises. Batra, 110 S.W.3d at 129-130. The ability to control would be relevant in situations where the landlord has the right to remove a dog from the premises under the terms of the lease.

Call For A Free Case Review (972) 599 4100


To prove a case against someone for having a dangerous domesticated animal, a plaintiff must show that: 1) the defendant owned or possessed the animal; 2) the animal had dangerous propensities abnormal to its class; 3) the defendant knew or should have known the animal had dangerous propensities, and 4) the animal’s dangerous propensities caused the plaintiff’s injuries. Allen v. Albin, 97 S.W.3d 655, 660 (Tex.App.—Waco 2002, no pet.).

To establish that an animal is dangerous, a plaintiff must demonstrate that the animal’s vicious or aggressive tendencies were not normal for that species of animal. Marshall v. Ranne, 511 S.W.2d 255, 258 (Tex.1974). This is determined by the facts. In one case, testimony that a dog was ferocious, occasionally knocked people down, and disliked children was sufficient to avoid summary judgment. A pit bull should be judged against other dogs, not just other pit bulls. Dunnings v. Castro, 881 S.W.2d 559, 561 (Tex.App.__Houston [1st Dist.] 1994, writ denied).


In addition to the owner’s “negligence” in allowing his dog to run loose or allowing the dog to attack you, there are frequently city codes and ordinances that address dog attack cases. There are leash laws, laws requiring dog enclosures, and laws requiring dangerous dogs to be kept in a specific manner – or removed from city limits in some places. People don’t always follow the law, so you’ll need to look into the dog-related codes and ordinances in your municipality to see if one of these codes or ordinances was broken. Proof of an ordinance violation can sometimes overcome a defense used by an insurance company to avoid paying your case.


If you require medical attention for your injuries, seek it. Obtain all records pertaining to your assault, including animal control records, medical records, police reports, and any other records/reports pertaining to what occurred. Take photos of any injuries. It is easier to describe an injury visually than it is to describe it verbally.

Avoid being a victim for the second time. If your injury occurred in North Texas, do not give the insurance company a “out” by attempting to handle your case on your own without first consulting with an experienced Dallas dog bite lawyer.

No Fee Unless You Win! Call (972) 599 4100


The Law Office of Doug Goyen handles personal injury cases throughout the state of Texas. This includes car crash cases (automobiles, 18 wheelers, motorcycles, pedestrians struck by vehicles, etc.), premises cases (such as injuries caused by a dangerous condition on a property), dog bite cases (or other animals where the owner let their animal loose or had a dangerous animal and the owner’s negligence causes injury to someone else), workplace injuries, and other injuries caused by the negligence or harmful acts of others.

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If you need a Dallas dog bite lawyer, contact us for a free phone consultation and strategy session about your case. The strategy session will include a summary of the facts discussed during the session, the identification of legal issues, and the identification of the most important legal issues that will maximize the value of your case.

Call For A Free Case Review (972) 599 4100

Directions to our main North Dallas Office:  (Click the following link for directions to our Addison office:

Law Office of Doug Goyen)

15851 Dallas Pkwy #605

Addison, Texas 75001

972 599 4100 phone

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By Doug Goyen, douggoyen@goyenlaw.com

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