Liability When Dogs Attack Bicyclists in Tennessee

A dog presents a real hazard to bicyclists.  A dog can attack the bicyclist, or the bicycle, and cause a crash.  An attacking dog can cause the bicyclist to swerve, running off the road into a ditch or into the road and a passing car.  And, when you fall on a bicycle, particularly if you are traveling at a high speed, you will be very fortunate if you avoid serious injuries. (Clink on the link for more information about Tennessee dog bite or dog attack cases.)

Tennessee law provides that a dog owner has the responsibility to keep that dog under reasonable control at all times and to keep that dog from running at large.  "Running at large" specifically includes a dog going uncontrolled on a public highway or street.

A dog owner who does not keep the dog from running at large is responsible for any damages suffered by a person who is injured by the dog if the dog is in a public place or lawfully in or on the private property of someone else.  Liability is imposed in these circumstances even if the dog has never shown any dangerous propensities or whether the dog’s owner knew or should have known of the dog’s dangerous propensities. 

If you were injured because you hit a dog on your bicycle or when you swerved to avoid a dog, please call us for a free consultation.  You can reach me at 615.742.4880 or, if you are out of Nashville area, you can call toll-free at 866.812.8787.  You can also reach us through our Contact Form.


John Day represents people who have been injured or lost a loved one due to the negligence of another person or company.  John has been listed in Best Lawyers for 20 years,  and has the highest legal rating a lawyer can earn by the legal rating service Martindale and AVVO.  An author of three books on law and over 50 articles for legal publications, John has given approximately 300 speeches to lawyers in over 15 states on personal injury, wrongful death, and related subjects.  He represents people across Tennessee in personal injury, wrongful death, medical malpractice, products liability and other civil cases.  To read what his clients have said about him and his law firm, click here.  

You can reach John by email at or by phone at 615.742-4880.  The toll-free number is 866-812-8787.

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