What You Need to Know About Colorado Dangerous Dog Laws

Are you aware that Colorado has implemented an actual law governing dangerous dogs?  While, some people may think this law puts too much power into the hands of the state, Colorado takes dog related injury very seriously.  Thus, this law was born to help protect innocent victims from dog attacks.

Defining Dangerous Dogs

In order to be considered a dangerous dog, the animal must meet a specific set of criteria, including identifiable behaviors and past history.  A dangerous dog as defined by Colorado law specifies that such animals have violent personalities, subsequently making them a risk of hurting others whether person or animal, have hurt or killed another animal or person, or have been trained in animal fighting.

What Happens If My Dog Meets This Criteria?

If your dog fits any of these criteria it will be by law considered a dangerous animal.  Colorado law dictates that it is illegal to own any dog that fits these requirements.  To do so would be to put oneself at risk for misdemeanor or felony.

If you are caught with a “dangerous dog,” severe penalties are applicable.  These include, fines, euthanasia of the animal, time spent behind bars, payment of damages, restrictions on future pet ownership, and/or mandatory community service.  The outcome of your case will be contingent upon the decision of the court system.  They will take factors specific to your case into consideration.  Factors that will be reviewed when ordering consequences are details, such as the accused previous criminal record, how much damage the animal caused, whether the incident was a first offense, and the severity of the attack.

After considering the unique details of your case, the judge will have the final say as to which penalty or combination of penalties you will receive.  Repeat offenders will be subject to harsher consequences, although ultimately all penalties are at the discretion of the judge, based upon his or her interpretation of the evidence provided.  The maximum penalty possible for this crime is 3 years spent behind bars and $100,000 to be paid in fines.

Ultimately, dangerous dog laws make the owner take full liability for any dog that has been deemed a dangerous dog.

In some circumstances, it is possible for the animal to be defended depending on the specific circumstances of the case.  Factors that may improve the outcome of your case, include an attack that occurred due to danger to the animal or the animal’s owner, if the dog was not previous considered to be dangerous, and if the attack happened in relation to hunting or herding.

If you have sustained injuries due to a dog attack, get the justice you deserve!  Contact a competent attorney today!

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About the Author: Alex Fisher