In an unusual incident reported by the Fayetteville Observer, a pack of three dogs fatally attacked 17 animals at two different North Carolina farms over the course of two days. In Hoke County, a 500-pound llama was acting as the safe keeper of the family’s goats and pets. It tried to prevent the three dogs from attacking the goats and was killed by the canine aggressors. The dogs then also killed 14 goats. The next day, the dog pack returned to the area and killed two goats belonging to a neighbor.
In North Carolina, owners of potentially dangerous dogs are responsible for any injury, deaths or damages that their animals cause. If an owner knows that his or her dog has the tendency to bite or cause harm, there is a care of duty to ensure that the animal remains secured. The Tar Heel State holds owners of dangerous dogs fully responsible for their animals’ actions. It may not be a legitimate defense if an owner attempts to prove that an attack was an accident or that the dog was provoked into a fight by another animal. Fines may also be imposed on owners who do not properly control or care for their dangerous pets.
When livestock or household pets in North Carolina are injured or killed by a dangerous dog, the owners of the harmed animals have a right to a civil action to help recover from their loss. There is no need to prove that an aggressive dog’s owner was negligent in restraining or caring for it. As written by the North Carolina General Assembly, and with only a few exceptions, dangerous dog owners are held strictly liable for any injuries or deaths to other animals or humans that their pets cause.