A dangerous dog case, like any other case, can be settled at any time, from initial impoundment of the dog through appeal.  It is always good to try to remain on good terms with the government attorney, because he plays a substantial role in whether a case gets resolved.  Try to be objective about your case.  Many of us can be overly zealous and self righteous, which can be a detriment when addressing the court or trying to settle a case.

There are many ways to compromise a case, and usually nobody gets everything they would like. 

In one case I was involved in, the county attorney agreed to let a dog go home without a dangerous dog designation, but with all the restrictions that possessing a dangerous dog would entail.  In another case here in Florida, a judge agreed (with the victim's approval), to commute a death sentence and allow a dog to go to a veterinarian and be a blood donor. You might not agree that such an outcome is desirable.  I am simply illustrating the ingenuity settlement may require. 

In extreme cases, banishment from the city or county may be the only alternative to saving a dog. If so, the owner must participate and understand all of the ramifications of such a decision.

Try to keep in mind that the government has legitimate concerns in dealing with these cases. They must consider the victim's side, publicity, inter-office and extra-office politics, and their ethical duties as lawyers. 

In some cases, detailed settlement agreements need to be hammered out. I will be posting some shortly to illustrate this point.

Settlement agreements

Oliver v. Clay County - Settlement Agreement - Euthanasia avoided - Severe bite, banishment from county, dangerous dog designation, owner banned from ownership 

Dangerous Dog Law

Helping to defend our best friends. Dangerous Dog Law (DDL) focuses on the legal defense of allegedly dangerous dogs. DDL is a member of the Pit Bulletin Legal News Network.

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