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Iowa Animal / Dog Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Domestic Violence for Iowa on
Q: So my parents abused me and I left about a year ago. I want to go back for my dogs. How would I do that?

My father abused them also but it was only two dogs he did it to.

Erik Steven Fisk
Erik Steven Fisk answered on May 8, 2018

Were you a minor? Are you a minor now? What's your claim to the dogs over your parents'? Generally speaking, pets are treated just like personal property under the law.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Iowa on
Q: My roommate and I have too many dogs but can we get in trouble for it?

My roommate has three dogs and I have three dogs but they live on separate floors and don't go outside together so can we still get in trouble for having too many dogs?

Stephen Douglas Lombardi
Stephen Douglas Lombardi answered on Mar 31, 2018

Read your lease and your town or city ordinances. There lies the answer.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Iowa on
Q: In short, is a dog owner responsible for a dog who damages material property in a home (shoes, glasses, etc)?

Initially, dog chewed shoes and inserts. Shoes were wearable so the roommate didn't pay for those, but paid for inserts.

I then tried to hide a new pair of shoes, dog found them, chewed them. I accepted some responsibility and didn't ask for her to pay for it.

I had another pair of... Read more »

Stephen Douglas Lombardi
Stephen Douglas Lombardi answered on Nov 15, 2017

It is the roommates responsibility to control her pets and any damage the dog does is her's to pay to repair or to replace. No if's, and's or but's about it.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts and Animal / Dog Law for Iowa on
Q: Iowa - Is it illegal to record personal phone calls without the other persons consent?

I have an app on my phone that records all my phone calls. I've recently been harassed and threatened. Can I use those recorded calls in court even though I didn't have the other persons consent or knowledge of the call being recorded?

Stephen Douglas Lombardi
Stephen Douglas Lombardi answered on Oct 25, 2017

Generally speaking so long as one person to a conversation has given permission, the call can be recorded. If recordings are legally obtained, so long as there is not another reason, the evidence is admissible.

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Animal / Dog Law for Iowa on
Q: Iowa rescue shelter is threatening to file a claim for breach of contract. What are my rights?

I adopted a 7 week old puppy that got severely ill within 24 hours of adoption. I took him to my vet who admitted my pup to puppy hospital. I alerted the shelter right away that he was sick and admitted. The shelter said they would do whatever they could to make it right. They offered a settlement... Read more »

Stephen Douglas Lombardi
Stephen Douglas Lombardi answered on Oct 25, 2017

It is improper and may even be a crime for someone to threaten to have someone put in jail over a disputed civil matter, such as an unpaid bill. In Polk County we refer to that as extortion. The contract you signed is what governs who should pay for what and when.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Iowa on
Q: Iowa, our female ran off 3 months ago, a neighbor 3 miles away has her, doesn't want to give her back, my rights?

She is a purebred and ran off after getting bred by our male. We posted her on lost dogs Iowa, used social media, called local vets and sheriff reporting her lost. They don't want to give her back and are selling the puppies. What are my rights in getting my dog back?

Stephen Douglas Lombardi
Stephen Douglas Lombardi answered on Oct 13, 2017

According to the law, the dog is property. The owner can sue in District Court for the dog to be returned, via a procedure commonly referred to as a replevin. Or in small claims court for the value of the dog. Or consider reporting it to the police and asking law enforcement to assist in obtaining... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Iowa on
Q: Son(7) threw apple over fence. Neighbor dogs fought over it. Who pays vet bill?

Ottumwa, IA

Is a seven year old really responsible for the dogs' actions though?

Stephen Douglas Lombardi
Stephen Douglas Lombardi answered on Oct 4, 2017

In which state did this happen? In which town or city? Let's assume for a minute that the seven year old boy is responsible. Then the boy's parents, if they have a homeowner's policy would likely by the one paying the bills, minus any deductible.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Iowa on
Q: Can my neighbor take my dog to the vet and give her shots when it's not her dog?

My neighbor ( who is a vet technician ) apparently found my dog. And instead of finding her owners she took her to her vet and got her shots and vaccinations. Without consent of the owner. My dog gets her collar off all the time so she didn't have it on when they found her. I just want to know if... Read more »

Stephen Douglas Lombardi
Stephen Douglas Lombardi answered on Aug 31, 2017

I fail to see how you are asking a serious question. First of all you admit the dog was running at-large, the dog was running without a collar and the dog had not been properly taken care of from a veterinarian standpoint. You are lucky the person who found it doesn't sue you to recover the costs... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Iowa on
Q: I was walking on the street and a dog bit me - the owner basically ran off while I was checking my leg.

Who pays for my hospital bill?

Stephen Douglas Lombardi
Stephen Douglas Lombardi answered on Nov 2, 2016

It appears from where you posted this question the dog bite occurred somewhere in Iowa. Your medical bills may be covered by two insurance policies. The first, assuming you can identify the owner of the dog, would be the dog owner's homeowner's insurance policy. And if not, then perhaps your own... Read more »

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