The fate of Padi the dog, a black lab mix that allegedly bit a 4-year-old boy in the veterinary office of Dr. Gartenburg, will be decided by a judge in circuit court sometime in the near future. Until that time, Padi has been released to the care of Dr. Gartenburg, who is Padi’s owner, with several restrictions including that Padi can only be around children when supervised and that ‘beware of dog’ signs were posted around Dr. Gartenburg’s home.
The story of Padi has garnered tons of media attention since the June 4 incident, with people on both sides of the issue. The child was present at Dr. Gartenburg’s office in the waiting room, playing with Padi, when both child and dog went for a toy under a desk. The child was bitten on the ear and required reconstructive surgery to repair it. The child’s babysitter was present at the time and claims the attack was unprovoked. Under Florida law, an animal that attacks a human can be euthanized. Padi’s owner feels that the child provoked the dog and that his dog should not be put down. Padi has been in custody of Animal Services since the day of the accident.
The two sides of this issue highlight the struggle between victim and pet owner in the case of a vicious dog bite. While pet owners feel that pets are part of the family, pets should also be trained by their owners not to attack people, especially children. A pet that has a history of biting is an accident waiting to happen, and usually it happens to young children. Children do not know the difference between what normal play is, and what would be considered ‘too rough’ with an animal. The animal assumes the child is being aggressive and responds in kind, sometimes with horrific outcomes. The best solution is to always closely supervise young children while they are playing with a pet of any species.
If someone you love has been the victim of a vicious dog bite, please contact us today at 877-FL-INJURY (877-354-6587).
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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