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Pennsylvania Animal / Dog Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: What can I do to get the dog back? Please help

A woman verbally surrendered her dog to me after abusing him, another woman offered and took him for vet care and after we established that he would have a permanent home with my grandmother after he recovers from vet care, she is now saying she is keeping him. My grandmother already met him, did a... Read more »

Kristina M. Bergsten
Kristina M. Bergsten answered on Jul 5, 2020

You’ll have to sue this person to get the dog back.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: I adopted a dog six months ago. She has had many vet bills since, and though we dearly love her, could no longer afford

I returned her to the store and she was adopted the same day. I do not want her back, but am desperate to see that she is ok. How can I find out where she is, get in touch with new owner?

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Jun 5, 2020

You can't have it both ways. They have no duty to tell you and in fact might be violating the privacy of the other owners.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: I was outside working in the yard and my dog escaped. It attacked my neighbors dog.

I must have accidentally left the door cracked and he got out while i was working in the yard. I didnt realize he was outside and he ran across the street and attacked my neigbors dog on the leash. It was not on either of our properties. Can they sue? I am willing to pay vet bills.

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Jun 5, 2020

Pay the vet bills &/or report it to your homeowners. Their dog leashed. Yours not. You're responsible.

2 Answers | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Car Accidents for Pennsylvania on
Q: A dog ran out into the road and hit my car. I pulled over and attempted to find the dog but he was no where to be found

I was doing at most 35mph, I walked down the block and attempted to find the dog. I couldn’t find the dog so I left because there was no damage to my car and the dog appeared okay. I didn’t report it to anyone because there was no outside and because of the dog being gone. I’m located in PA... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Jun 5, 2020

Hit and run is when you are involved in a collision and there is damage to property or person. Sounds like you have no duty to report it. If you wish you can call up the police for the area where it happened. Make note of when you call. If they say no problem, then just say "thank you."

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1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: If my dog was on my property and leashed and a unleashed dog comes on my property and my dog attacks it who is to blame

The person and the unleashed dog want us to pay the full vet bill but since the dog was on our property and was unleashed we don’t think we have to pay the full bill. We told them we are more than willing to pay half but they want us to pay the full 3000$. So what law for Kentucky says that we... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Jun 5, 2020

Did this happen in Pennsylvania? If not, refile with Justia under Kentucky.

I would say you don't have to pay anything. They let their dog trespass onto your yard. You already contained the dog. Not your problem if they chose to expose their dog to the realistic outcome.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: I was walking my dog on the sidewalk, she was in the grass about 12 inches and a pit bull darted out of an open garage

grabbed my dog by the cheek pulling both of us into the yard about 4 feet. The owner pulled the pit off her and removed part of her cheek and again attacked continuing to bite her neck holding her down trying to kill me dog. The owner did manage to get control of her bull and we left. The owner ran... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Jun 5, 2020

Send her a certified return receipt letter with the bills. Check with the dog warden to see if there was a report made.

Then you can file in small claims court.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: The old owner wants his dog back but couldn’t provide a good home for her. He couldn’t even take her to the vet.

I’ve providing her with a good home and have taken her to the vet. He gave up his rights to take care of her and Im giving her a better home. What do I do since he wants her back in the future

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Apr 24, 2020

Did he in fact give up his rights? If not, his dog. A lot depends on how you came into posession of the dog.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Boyfriends brothers friend accidentally stepped and broke leg on my dog can I sue him? My vet bill is 2,500, thank you!

I work nights and while I work I have my boyfriends brother watch my dog, but his brother invited his friend over and when he was leaving he was coming down the stairs and stepped and broke the back bone on my dog. When I came home I seen my dog in pain and took her to the vet, not only is the... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Apr 24, 2020

I'm sorry to hear this but anyone making a claim has to show that the other person was careless. Was the dog visible? Was a light on? (I'm also wondering why the dog wasn't up and alert--normally when they hear feet on a step they are at least wakeful). As to time lost from work, you... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: My neighbors dog killed my dog It came on my property and my dog onto it’s property.

What kind of restitution can I sue for in small claims court; vet bills, the cost to purchase or adopt another dog, etc???

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Apr 23, 2020

A lot depends on the facts--did you have a fence? etc. However you can get the value of the dog (i.e. it's market value, not it's value to you ), vet bills. Likely not the cost of a replacement but you can ask.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Old roommate wont give my cats back sorry not dogs but i truly need some advice on how to get them back

My old roommate and me got into a argument day of she tells me to leave so i do i only took a few things with me thinking ill get the rest later long story short she threw out most of my stuff but she has my electronic devices ps4 labtop to name a few things when i went back to get my things she... Read more »

Richard Winblad
Richard Winblad answered on Oct 29, 2019

Consider a small claims replevin action in your state. Replevin is an action to recover property like an animal.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Civil Litigation for Pennsylvania on
Q: Can I walk my dog with a leash on public school property if I am not near any of the kids or school is out?
Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Sep 11, 2019

Depends on the property owner--in this case the school board. The public is allowed on school grounds subject to the rules of the school. For instance, you can't just wander into a school. So it is with the grounds.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Laws about picking up dogs poop in your own backyard

Is there a time frame you have to pick up your own dogs poop in your own back yard

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Sep 11, 2019

Only at such time as your township ordinance establishes that it's a health hazard or public nuissance due to odor etc.

However you won't earn points with visitors if you leave it out there.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Civil Litigation for Pennsylvania on
Q: My dog died at the kennel. Kennel is filed a civil case for us to Pay the vet bill. My signature isn't on contract

No cell service while on vaca. So we didn't get the call from the that my dog was not well. My dog got sick and the kennel took him to vet he was diagnosed with bloat and they put him the sleep because his stomach had already died. They want us to pay the expenses back. I've never seen... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Jun 12, 2019

Do you have an expert to testify? If not you are correct that you didn't sign the contract, but then your girlfriend is on the hook--bottom line, you don't need a contract if you ask them to care for the dog and they do, and it's commercial and you know there's a charge. Your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: My handicapped dog is an escape artist. Dog warden is filling charges against me.

He had done this 3 times in last year. She says it is more egregious because he is handicapped. What can I do? This is in PA not NJ. Don't know why it sent that location.

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on May 23, 2019

Who is handicapped the dog? Whether handicapped or not, it is up to you to make sure Houdini the dog can't get out. He gets out, you get cited. If you can explain why it isn't your fault you can plead not guilty but chances are it'll be on you.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: What determines ownership of a dog? I was advised that a dog license does not since anyone could obtain one for any dog.

I spoke to a license manager in my county who advised that having a license for a dog does not mean that you own that dog. So then what does? Vet bills, groomer receipts, etc??

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on May 23, 2019

All the above. If you got the dog from someone be useful to get something signed from that person.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: is it legal to have ducks for pets in archbald pa
Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on May 23, 2019

The zoning officer should be able to tell you. Normally ducks are viewed as fowl--if you can keep hens, chances are you may keep ducks.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: What are the current laws regarding someone else's dogs crapping in your yard or property?

A women who walks her dog down the street always has her dog crapping in my yard.

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Apr 26, 2019

The dog is trespassing and she is violating laws that require a dog owner to pick up their pooche's poop.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: What can I do if my roommate got rid of my dog well I'm at work. What can I do about it?
Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Apr 26, 2019

If you know where try to get it back. If not all the roomate owes you is the cost of the dog if it had been for sale the day before--the market value. Technically she destroyed property. You need to look for a roomate that knows boundaries.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: dog bit utility worker on property. didn't break skin. what should I do next from my side? is this reportable?

The worker has to file an incident report through her company and has the dogs license number. my question is since the dog didn't break skin and leave much of a bruise how does this get handled by authorities? Obviously through her company might be different but if they have to report it to... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Apr 19, 2019

Won't affect you as far as the authorities--it's not a mandatory reportable as far as I know--but you should report it to your insurance conmpany.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: My dog has permission in writing to be on my neighbors property unleashed and unattended. Is this allowable per PA dog l

Allowable Per PA dog law?

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Apr 19, 2019

Well, that's fine for your neighbor. But if the dog get's loose it'll be on you. That's why they have dog laws. And your neighbor I assume will not want that responsibility. Also if unleashed, and it gets into it with a postal worker or deliveryperson that is on you.

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