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TORT LAW — ANIMALS: Court finds Defendant is not liable when the Plaintiff’s dog is responsible for the injury

The plaintiff brought a complaint alleging strict liability under Connecticut General Statutes § 22-357, after the plaintiff and defendant both brought dogs to a yard sale, where the plaintiff’s dog began to fight with the defendant’s dog. In an attempt to break up the dog fight, the plaintiff suffered a laceration to his right arm. In his defense, the defendant claimed the plaintiff’s dog initiated the fight, was the aggressor, and therefore that the defendant was shielded from liability. After conflicting testimony as to the events of the fight, a third-party witness testified that she never saw the defendant’s dog bite the plaintiff. The witness also testified that the plaintiff’s dog was in fact the aggressor in the incident. The trial court finds this testimony persuasive, and finds that the plaintiff’s dog was the instigator in the incident, and that the plaintiff’s injuries were proximately caused by his own dog. Judgment for the defendant. Scheer v. Storz, New Haven Judicial District at New Haven, Docket No. CV-17-6074938, (April 22, 2021).