Q: What legal recourse do I have for a neighbor who allowed their dogs to run free for months and kill 18 cats in our area?
The neighbors moved to our area and never kept their dogs contained. The three dogs packed up and killed 18 cats in our neighborhood. They are seen on security camera chasing cats away and even killing them on their own porches. The owners claim they had no idea of what their dogs were doing, but do admit to not containing the dogs and allowing them to roam day and night. We would like the dogs removed from the owners. Do we have a realistic case?
A: Please discuss with an attorney. The best thing to do is to report to the local animal control. Plaintiffs in animal cases often claim that homeowners, landlords, and homeowners' associations owed them a duty of care and that their failure of care was negligent. Negligence is analyzed under the familiar elements of duty, breach of duty, causation, and damages. Negligence may be predicated on the characteristics of the animal which, although not abnormal to its class, create a foreseeable risk of harm. As to those characteristics, the owner has a duty to anticipate the harm and to exercise ordinary care to prevent the harm
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