North Carolina hunting dogs are exempt from dangerous dog laws.
Earlier this month, a hiker and her two dogs were viciously attacked by a pack of bear hunting dogs. She was left helpless when she discovered that they were completely exempt from all legal prosecutions since they were participating in a lawful hunt.
Though the majority of hunting dogs require a large amount of training and experience to even make it into the field, there are always exceptions, and a canine’s natural instinct can and will take over if not properly controlled.
North Carolina law states that dogs “being used in a lawful hunt” cannot be prosecuted like dogs that are not considered hunting dogs.
Dogs can be deemed dangerous if a dog “killed or inflicted severe injury upon a domestic animal when not on the owner’s real property,” or “approached a person when not on the owner’s property in a vicious or terrorizing manner in an apparent attitude of attack.”
Usually, dangerous dogs must be quarantined for a given number of days and are then contained in such a way so as to prevent them from attacking another person for the rest of their lives.
Hunting dogs and police dogs are exempt from this kind of procedure in North Carolina.
Safety Tips for Non-Hunters
It’s worth taking some extra precautions, in North Carolina and anywhere else, to ensure you and your canines are not made victims of the law exemptions while hiking, camping, or enjoying the great outdoors.
- Wear blaze orange vests to make yourself very visible to those around you. Make sure your dog is also wearing one.
- Wear bells to alert other people and animals that you are approaching.
- Know the hunting season dates for your local areas.
- To avoid all possible conflicts, choose an area where hunting is not allowed.
Always be aware of your surroundings. Though it’s only a last-resort mechanism, you may want to consider bringing self-defense tools to protect yourself and your family.