City of Sisak to Pay Hefty Sum After Woman Falls Victim to Stray Dogs

By 3 January 2019

The police failed to determine the owner(s) of the dogs, but the witnesses said the animals were wandering around the streets of their own accord for at least one month before the event itself. The City of Sisak will now have to pay up for the damages incurred.

As VLM/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 3rd of January, 2019, the City of Sisak will have to pay 43,420 kuna in compensation to Sisak woman Ljubić Rendulić-Holzer, who in September 2014 fell victim to the antics of stray dogs in the centre of Sisak, in an incident in which she fell to the ground and suffered numerous injuries to her feet and head.

The City of Sisak now has to settle a little more than 11,000 kuna in court costs on top of that, as was decided upon a few days ago by a judge at the Sisak Municipal Court, Andrea Vasiljević.

Ljubica Rendulić-Holzer, who is otherwise a judge at the County Court in Sisak herself, suffered injuries while talking to a friend in the street. Not far from her, three stray dogs without any supervision or control were playing. During whatever game the dogs were playing, they collided with her, knocking her down and causing her to hit her head and hurt her foot.

Emergency services took her to hospital where medical help was provided, after which the event was reported to the police. She continued to suffer from injuries caused by the incident at the end of March 2015, and had to go through as many as 60 physical therapy sessions.

The City of Sisak stated in its defense that the dogs cannot be determined as strays, and that if they were, damages would have to be sought via Sisak's veterinary station, which, at that time, had a contract with the City of Sisak on dealing with apparently abandoned and stray animals. However, the photograph taken by the victim's wife shortly after the attack clearly shows the scene of the event, in which three dogs of medium size without collars are involved, this was confirmed by witnesses as well.

The police could not determine the owners of the dogs from the photograph taken by the victim's husband, but witnesses claim that that same pack of dogs had been wandering around freely for about a month before the incident took place.

The court therefore ordered that the payment of damages be paid by the City of Sisak because it was determined that the city itself retains the right of supervision and control of the services provided by the Sisak veterinary station, and since the dogs had been wandering around for more than a month prior to the event, it is apparent that Sisak's city officials hadn't done their job properly. Therefore, the city budget has to pay a total of 43,240 kuna to the woman for physical ailments, psychological damage, loss of earnings, and medical treatment costs.

Otherwise, problems like this caused by dogs are quite common in Croatia and in neighbouring countries, although this was not a direct attack by dogs.

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Click here for the original article by VLM for Poslovni Dnevnik