Costa Mesa, CA asked in Animal / Dog Law for California

Q: my sister was watching our dog until we were able to get into a place that allowed pets, since then we had a falling out

and she refuses to give the dog back. I have offered to pay her the cost of care for the time she had him, I have all paperwork showing im the owner, what can be done?

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1 Lawyer Answer
William John Light
William John Light
  • Animal & Dog Law Lawyer
  • Riverside, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Report the dog stolen. It is unlikely that the police will get involved in this dispute, but you should begin there. If that doesn't work, you can sue sue your sister in Small Claims for the value of your dog or its return. If you sue, bring all evidence of the existence of your dog, and its value, and of your your efforts to get return or full payment (emails, voicemails, etc.). If you win, you may also be liable to your sister for a daily kenneling fee. Whether you win, and how much you might owe may depend on the terms under which you left the dog behind.

Plaintiff’s Claim and ORDER to Go to Small Claims Court; Form SC-100 (Lawsuit for monetary damages)

Request for Court Order and Answer; Form SC-105 (Request for Return of Property, filed with SC-100)

Order on Request for Court Order; Form SC-105A

Proof of Service; Form SC-104

No guaranties that these are the appropriate forms or that a Small Claims Judge will rule in your favor.

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