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Home / Case Digests / Appellate Division, Fourth Dept. / Fourth Department – Dog bite: Zicari v. Buckley, et al.

Fourth Department – Dog bite: Zicari v. Buckley, et al.

New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Fourth Judicial Department

Dog bite

Vicious propensities – Unprovoked attack

Zicari v. Buckley, et al.

CA 22-00210

Appealed from Supreme Court, Monroe County

Background: The plaintiffs commenced an action seeking damages when the plaintiff was attacked by a dog owned by the defendant and, while retreating from the dog, fell down the front steps of the defendant’s home. The plaintiffs appealed from the grant of summary judgment dismissing the complaint.

Ruling: The Appellate Division reinstated two causes of action. The court noted that the defendant failed to establish that he neither knew nor should have known that the dog had any vicious propensities. The plaintiff had testified that the dog was barking, pushing the door open and lunged at the plaintiff, biting him in the thigh. The defendant allegedly stated to the plaintiff that the dog “doesn’t like people who wear winter coats” and that the “dog was protective.” This evidence, in conjunction of the unprovoked attack, raises a question of fact as to whether the defendant knew or should have known of the dog’s vicious propensities.

Kristen Bombroski, of McConville, Considine, Cooman & Morin, for the plaintiffs-appellants; Michael C. Pretsch, of Osborne, Reed & Burke, for the defendant-respondent.

Oral argument video