Dog Bites in New Mexico

Is a dog’s owner liable if it bites someone in NM?

Every year, thousands of people across the nation will be attacked by a dog.  While dogs are known as man’s best friend, they can be dangerous. Dog bites can leave victims with lasting physical, emotional, and financial injuries.  If you have suffered a dog bite in New Mexico, you likely have many questions. Our New Mexico dog bite attorneys offer a look at some commonly asked questions about dog bites in the state below.


  • What should I do after a dog attack?


If you have been attacked by a dog, you should immediately contact law enforcement officers.  The responding officer will generate documentation of the attack and usually involve animal control.  Both the officer and animal control will create a report of the incident. Seek medical attention as soon as possible for your wounds.  Animal bites commonly lead to infection, so do not delay.


  • Who is liable for a dog bite injury in NM?


New Mexico does not have a specific dog bite statute, but dog bite victims may be able to receive compensation from the owner of the dog under the one bite rule or the theory of negligence.  If the dog’s owner knew or should have known that the dog was vicious or had an inclination to be vicious, then the dog’s owner will be liable for the injuries that the dog inflicted. The crucial question will become whether the owner knew of the dog’s potential for danger.  Evidence of knowledge on the part of the dog’s owner could include previous bites or testimony from others as to the dog’s tendency to growl or act aggressively towards other.

Dog bite victims can also pursue a recovery under the theory of negligence.  Even if the dog’s owner did not have knowledge of its tendency to bite, where the owner ineffectively controlled the dog in a situation where the dog could reasonably be expected to inflict injury, the owner may be liable.


  • What compensation could I receive in a personal injury lawsuit?


Dog bite victims can pursue compensation for all expenses stemming from their injuries.  Dog bite victims will commonly seek compensation for their medical expenses incurred due to the bite, which may be ongoing.  Dog bite victims may also seek coverage for their time off work and pain and suffering. The more serious the injury, the more damages you will likely pursue in a New Mexico dog bite case.

Posted in: Dog Bite Injury