In 2007, the USA saw 32 fatal dog attacks on people. For details and a month-by-month breakdown of the recent canine homicides, see Dangerous and Vicious Dogs.
20 of these took place in the 18 “one bite states” and 3 “mixed dog bite statute” states (referring to Georgia, Tennessee and New York, which have statutes that substantially embody the “one bite rule”). 12 were in the 29 statutory strict liability states.
These statistics support the view that the one bite rule needs to be replaced in the 21 states that continue to rely upon it. The one bite rule actually protects dog owners from their own negligence, even if it results in the death of another person. This old English law demands little or no vigilance on the part of dog owners. A single dog owner can own one biting dog after another, without fear of civil liability, because every dog gets that one free bite, mauling or killing. To learn more about the deadly “one-bite rule,” click here.
The one-bite rule should be rejected throughout the United States. The children in one bite states like Texas, North Carolina and Maryland are no less important and deserve no less protection than kids in strict liability states.