Special Session For Congress Closes Without Bill On Animal Legislation

Legislators in Maryland’s most recent special legislative session, which closed on Tuesday, August 14th, did not pass legislation that would alter the Maryland Court of Appeals’ decision designating pit bulls as inherently dangerous. The high court’s ruling means that owners of pit bulls will be held liable for any injuries and damages caused by an attack by a pit bull. Maryland law with regard to other dogs would require a plaintiff to prove the dog’s prior violent behavior before the owner could be held liable for damages. The court found that landlords can also be held liable in dog-bite cases on their property. The fact that no legislation was passed will mean that landlords who have tenants with dogs will have to make some serious decisions about whether to allow their tenants with dogs to keep them on their property or face potential liability.