Connecticut Cat Bite Law

Just finished reading the 2008 Connecticut Appellate Review by Wesley W. Horton and Kenneth J. Bartschi and they touched upon the very important case of Allen v. Cox. The authors pose the question: Does a cat get one free bite? Their answer, “No, if the cat has a bad reputationl yes, if it has a good reputation.”

Imagine introducing evidence at trial concerning the character of a cat. They’re all evil.

Socks The Cat 

So often it’s the dogs that get all of the bad press. Here at aconnecticutlawblog, make no bones about it – I’m a dog person.

In the interest of equal time, I’ve decided to write about cat bite  law.

Today, the Connecticut Supreme Court released an opinion holding that when a cat has a propensity to attack other cats, knowledge of that propensity may render the owner liable for injuries  to people that are reasonably foreseeable as a result of such behavior. Allen v. Cox

Ms. Allen was injured when she tried to protect her cat from a cat that had previously attacked other cats.  When Ms. Allen heard two cats fighting she opened her door and her cat ran towards her and she picked it up and put her cat inside. The defendant’s cat jumped on Ms. Allen and bit her in her left arm.

In viewing the facts in a light most favorable to the plaintiff, the Connecticut Supreme Court found that it was reasonably foreseeable that a person would try to protect their cat from being attacked by another cat. There was a genuine issue of material fact as to whether the defendants knew or should have known that their cat’s vicious propensities could lead it to injure a person. 

Pictured above is Socks the cat. Socks is too lazy to attack anything let alone anyone which is good news for his owners.

Ryan McKeen is a trial attorney at Connecticut Trial Firm, LLC in Glastonbury, Connecticut. In 2016, he was honored by the CT Personal Injury Hall of Fame for securing one of the highest settlements in the state. He is a New Leader in the Law. ABA 100. Avvo 10. 40 under 40 for Hartford Business Journal. He has been quoted in Time Magazine, the New York Times, Hartford Courant, Wall Street Journal Law Blog and the Hartford Business Journal. He focuses his practice on Connecticut Personal Injury law. He loves what he does. Contact him ryan@cttrialfirm.com or 860 471 8333

3 thoughts on “Connecticut Cat Bite Law

  1. Did I read that correctly? All cats "are evil"? Even as a "cat person," I still respect "dog people." So where is the mutual love of all animals? Its not like the Yankees v. Red Sox, where clearly there is a defining line between good and evil.

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