Control of Dogs Act 1986

Liability of owner for damage by dog.


21. (1) The owner of a dog shall be liable in damages for damage caused in an attack on any person by the dog and for injury done by it to any livestock; and it shall not be necessary for the person seeking such damages to show a previous mischievous propensity in the dog, or the owner's knowledge of such previous propensity, or to show that such injury or damage was attributable to neglect on the part of the owner.

(2) Where livestock are injured by a dog on land on to which they had strayed, and either the dog belonged to the occupier of the land or its presence on the land was authorised by the occupier, a person shall not be liable under this section in respect of injury done to the livestock, unless the person caused the dog to attack the livestock.

(3) A person is liable in damages for any damage caused by a dog kept on any premises or structure to a person trespassing thereon only in accordance with the rules of law relating to liability for negligence.

(4) ( a) Any damage or injury for which a person is made liable under this section shall be deemed to be attributable to a wrong within the meaning of the Civil Liability Act, 1961, and the provisions of that Act shall apply accordingly.

( b) Sections 11 (2) ( a) and 11 (2) ( b) of the Statute of Limitations, 1957, shall apply to such damage.


Modifications (not altering text):


Reference construed (10.07.1991) by Statute of Limitations (Amendment) Act 1991 (18/1991), s. 3(4), commenced on enactment. Note that s. 3(1) is prospectively substituted by Legal Services Regulation Act 2015 (65/2015), s. 221(1)(a), not commenced as of date of revision.

Special time limit for actions in respect of personal injuries.

3.—(1) An action, other than one to which section 6 of this Act applies, claiming damages in respect of personal injuries to a person caused by negligence, nuisance or breach of duty (whether the duty exists by virtue of a contract or of a provision made by or under a statute or independently of any contract or any such provision) shall not be brought after the expiration of [2 years] from the date on which the cause of action accrued or the date of knowledge (if later) of the person injured.


(4) The reference in section 21 (4) (b) of the Control of Dogs Act, 1986, to section 11 (2) (b) of the Principal Act shall be construed as a reference to subsection (1) of this section.