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Florida Animal / Dog Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: My in-laws weren’t paying attention to our dog while sitting and now theirs is pregnant

My husband was just told today our dog might be a dad. This happened under the supervision of my in-laws. (Our dog is a purebred and theirs is not) what can I do to ensure responsibility so they aren’t taking advantage of their dogs pregnancy? I already know the pups or Mom won’t have proper... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Oct 6, 2020

No, animals such as your dog don't have rights. If you feel they are mistreating the resulting pups or other animals, you report them then.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: I was told from the County Animal Control that because a dog attacked and bit me and my dog at a park nobody is liable?

I was walking into the dog park, but there's 2 gates and the first gate goes into a boxed area that you unleash your dog. I was told by the dog owner that he wanted to pick up his small dog before we proceeded into the dog park. I let him pick up the dog and when I opened the second gate... Read more »

Stephen Arnold Black
Stephen Arnold Black
answered on Sep 27, 2020

Yes, you have a case against the dog owner for strict liability and negligence. Discuss your case with counsel here in Florida about contingency fee representation, which means you don’t pay anything unless you win. Hopefully, you can find out the identity of this dog owner. If not, a private... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: Son was arrested three weeks ago, may or may not make bond. I have his dog but do not want to keep it. What to do?

Son arrested for drug charges. Family have decided not to bond him out as this is third arrest w past prison time. I took his dog but live in townhouse w my own pet. Do not want to keep her. Not sure when or if son will bond out in next few weeks. He is not very responsible w the dog but it is... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Sep 26, 2020

Before you give the dog away, get something from him, in writing, to the effect that he is giving the dog to you.

1 Answer | Asked in Agricultural Law and Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: How do I create and file intent to lien a horse who has been abandoned by owner and/or board hasn’t been paid ?
Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Aug 26, 2020

In order to claim a possessory lien on the horse, a security interest in the horse would need to have been created in the boarding contract. The only other way to get the horse would be to sue the owner, get a judgment, levy upon the horse, and then buy it at the execution sale.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: How do I place and record a lien for Unpaid horse room and board on my property? What do I do?
Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Aug 26, 2020

Why do you think it would do any good to record a lien on your own property?

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Civil Rights for Florida on
Q: Me and my emotional support animal was deined housing

Me and my emotional support animal has been deined housing. i have emails to show they asked me to fill out pet forms and then deined me after I would not fill them out. When someone has an emotional support animal or a service dog by law no one can make u fill out a pet form. Why because service... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Aug 24, 2020

One of your first mistakes was refusing to fill out the pet form. I don't know what questions were on that form, but I believe you were probably incorrectly claiming that it was against the law for them to ask you to fill it out. If you claim that the animal is an "emotional support... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: If a female dog owner and a male dog owner had a verbal agreement and the female dog owner broke the agreement.

can we take legal action on this matter because no one signed any contracts but we do have picture proof that they agreed on the matter

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Aug 12, 2020

Perhaps, but you didn't say what the agreement provided for. And, I don't know if it matters, but by "female dog owner", do you mean that the owner was female or the dog was female. Ditto re: the "male dog owner".

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: If somone continues to touch my dog without my permission and I ask them not to what would you recommend I do?

A man at the dog park who I don't know and don't believe is completely there has been harassing other peoples dogs. He continues to touch peoples dogs without their permission and will chase after them. More than one person has asked him to stop is there anything we can do? Call the cops?... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Aug 12, 2020

Don't take the dog there anymore.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: If somone grabs my dog to pet him at the dog park and I have asked them not too but they continue can I press charges?

My dog enjoys going to the dog park and will run to other dogs to play. There have been a few instances were somone will go out of their way to grab my dog to pet him. I usually ask them not to and they stop however their is one individual who I have asked numerous times to keep his hands of my... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Aug 11, 2020

No, you can't "press charges". It's not a crime to touch someone else's dog.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: Let say I was breeding dogs and they died from something i couldn't control . can the other partner sue??
Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Aug 10, 2020

Your question is unclear. Do you mean that you are in a business partnership and that the partnership is in the dog-breeding business? If so, why would your partner want to sue you?

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: What is the best verbiage on a sign that will be posted on my property, warning people I have a protective dog?

I heard certain verbiage can hold dog owner liable if the dog bites someone; while other verbiage releases dog owner from liability. Please provide clarity of this issue. Thank you very much.

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Jul 25, 2020

The wording on such a sign would not "release[ you] from liability", but it might be evidence that the injured person had assumed the risk of being injured by your dog. It's difficult to imagine how or why you would post a sign which would "hold [you] liable"; perhaps... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: Can I sue an officer for entering my property uninvited and shooting my dog?

They were warned we had dogs too

Kristina M. Bergsten
PREMIUM
Kristina M. Bergsten
answered on Jul 23, 2020

Yes. Talk to a civil rights attorney in your area.

2 Answers | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Car Accidents for Florida on
Q: If an unknown neighbor came to my door and my dog got out and they were scared can I be sued

They came to complain about my dog pooping in their yard, which is actually an easement

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Jul 20, 2020

They were scared, but not injured? Surely you jest.

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2 Answers | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: My boyfriend and I were given a dog by a family who could no longer care for it. After about 8 months of having the dog,

we broke up. I took the dog when I left our apartment because I didn't feel that he would care for the dog properly (he often left for 2 or three days at a time to go drinking with his buddies - hence the reason we broke up). I left the state for a couple months and stayed with my parents... Read more »

Kristina M. Bergsten
PREMIUM
Kristina M. Bergsten
answered on Jul 13, 2020

If you're not living with him, he can't abuse you any more. If he shows up on your property or space, call the police immediately and do not let him enter! If you're afraid the dog will be abused in his possession, keep the dog and stay away from this guy. You can block his... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: My husband and I were given 3 dogs over the years from a rescue person that was a personal friend. We never signed paper

nor exchanged money. We were given another dog in January that she is now threatening to take back because she and I had differing opinions on Facebook. The dog was given to us at local store that is owned by A

couple who also works with rescues. A picture was taken of the woman from the... Read more »

Kristina M. Bergsten
PREMIUM
Kristina M. Bergsten
answered on Jul 9, 2020

It sounds like the dog is legally yours, whether you paid money, signed a contract, or not, or were given the dog as a gift. Verbal contracts of donative intent or verbal contracts conveying ownership are just as enforceable as written contracts.

2 Answers | Asked in Contracts and Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: If I adopt a pet from a pet rescue, does said paid belong to me or am I just 'renting' it from the agency?

I recently got a cat from a pet rescue. When adopting the cat I had to fill out a lengthy adoption contract. A few parts concerned me and I was hoping someone could provide clarification.

"1: I understand that I am not PURCHASING a pet but ADOPTING and SAVING THE LIFE of a homeless... Read more »

Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron
answered on Jul 5, 2020

You're confused by the language "not purchasing", and I can understand your confusion. From your brief description, it appears the intent of the agreement is that the pet is not being sold to you, but rather is given to you as a GIFT. It calls the adoption fee a... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: Am I allowed to sue for damages if my unregistered dog was attacked by my neighbor’s unregistered/ unvaccinated dog?

This happened during a walk that they had a plank that was loose on their fence and they moved it to the side, allowing a hole large enough for their dog to escape out of. An hour or so later they fixed the fence so is that negligible on their part since it was easily fixed with the plank there and... Read more »

Kristina M. Bergsten
PREMIUM
Kristina M. Bergsten
answered on Jul 3, 2020

Yes, but generally your damages are limited to the value of your dog or veterinary bills. You could also call animal control and get this person charged with the crime and get restitution through the criminal

Process.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: Can I be sued if my dog gets the neighbors dog pregnant?
Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Jun 29, 2020

Perhaps.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: What type of signage do I need to have in my property to protect me and my dog?

I moved to a 1.25 acre home and want to know what type of signs I need in case someone enters my property and my dog(s) are loose.

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Jun 29, 2020

How about "Beware of the dogs."?

Hopefully you also have insurance.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Florida on
Q: Can I own a dog without living with them? My grandparents want me to be the legal owner of their dog but stay with them.
Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Jun 4, 2020

Can you own the dog while not living with your grandparents? Sure. Who would take care of the dog? Whatever the arrangement, get it in writing.

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