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Texas Animal / Dog Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: My ex bought a dog 3 years ago and didn’t pay him off, so now his in collection. What can I do to legally make him mine.

I just found out that his in collection because he never paid the dog off. I’ve been taking care of “our” dog for the past year. I will pay what he owes but I want to put the dog under my name. I don’t want to give up the dog. What can I do to get custody?

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Aug 11, 2021

It sounds like you already have "custody." What you want is ownership. Write up a simple agreement that he is selling you the dog in exchange for you paying off what he owes to the seller.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: I have been caring and boarding two big dogs for over a year, the owner has only visited once. He is now refusing

To pay for the boarding fees, food costs. Do i have to surrender the poor dogs that he cant afford to feed? Can i claim ownership now that they are abandoned? There's been no communication for 3 months. What is the holding period in Texas?

Am i allowed to refuse to return his dogs... Read more »

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Aug 9, 2021

They aren't legally just "abandoned," but under Texas Property Code Section 70.003, you have a lien on the dogs for the amount of the charges for their care, and can hold them until the charges are paid. To be able to sell them, you must comply with Section 70.005, and give notice... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: Ownership of Dog?

I foster (now used to foster) for a 501c3 dog rescue group. A dog was posted that needed a foster and I went and picked up from the ex-owner that was surrendering her. HOWEVER, the surrender form was never signed. The rescue wanted to give it to another foster that I did not believe it was the best... Read more »

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Jul 6, 2021

On the facts stated, probably the original owner is still the owner. Paying for veterinary care doesn't change the ownership.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: If I sold someone a dog and we agreed on payment every 2 weeks and payments are not being made on time but once down to

If I sold someone a dog and we agreed on payment every 2 weeks and payments are not being made on time but once down to last $350 payment doesn't pay on date agreed upon can I get the dog back

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Jul 6, 2021

It depends on the terms of the agreement, but without a written agreement that gives you a security interest in the dog to secure payment, you can't. Your only remedy would be to sue in the Justice of the Peace court for the unpaid balance.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: My husband gave my dog away, while we were on our honeymoon.

Na

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Jul 1, 2021

While giving the dog away was wrong, apparently this person has had the dog since 2009 - 12 years, or most of the dog's life. Get a divorce or don't but I think the time for arguing about who has the dog has long passed.

2 Answers | Asked in Products Liability and Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: I purchased a deformed puppy and the breeder refuses any type of refund. Do I sue?

I paid full price for a puppy. I bought it as a pet with the intention of breeding. When I took her for the first vet appointment I learned of a disability and my vet said she shouldn’t breed. I asked the breeder for a refund and she refused. She said I could return the puppy and be on a waiting... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Jun 23, 2021

The question is was it the type of deformation that a breeder should have been able to spot--not all such deformations are able to be detected without specialized knowledge. As the person claiming, it's on you to show through expert testimony that the breeder had to have known about that.... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: What can I do if my neighbor threatens to call the pound because my dog escaped through the fence and goes to his yard?

My dog is a pit and I am currently visiting my mother. She has a fenced house with a gate and he has found spots through the gate to escape through. We have been reinforcing the fence in these spots but he seems to find a way. He is not aggressive and has never biten anything or anyone.

Boe Lynn Bowen
Boe Lynn Bowen answered on Jun 16, 2021

Threatening to call the pound is not a crime by itself.

Facts might change this: like he is making threats multiple times a day. Depending on how and how often this occurs you might have a harassment claim.

I would encourage you to ensure your fence is in order and the animal...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Domestic Violence for Texas on
Q: My ex says she is going to take me to court for the gifts she gave me. She thinks I should have to pay for them.

8 month relationship that was physically abusive (her towards me) and verbally abusive her to me. She got a credit card and we got an engagement ring for her. It’s under her name. Her care credit card was used to pay for a dogs vet visit. And an Amex card that had my name on it as an authorized... Read more »

Kiele Linroth Pace
Kiele Linroth Pace answered on May 28, 2021

She can sue you for whatever she thinks you owe her, and you can file a counterclaim for what you think she owes, and then a judge can sort it all out. You could hire a civil attorney to increase the chances that you'll win but it would probably be faster, cheaper, and less heart-wrenching to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: My roommate shaved my dog without my consent, is there any legal action that can be taken?
Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Apr 13, 2021

This sounds like such an unusual and strange thing to do that I feel certain there is more to this story. However, on the facts stated, you have no damages. The fur will grow back. Although it would be an assault on a person, animals are property.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: My dog bit one of my neighbors . HOA wants her removed immediately and permanently. Can they do this without any notice?
Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Apr 11, 2021

Presumably this kind of problem is not addressed in your deed restrictions - if there is, that will govern. If not, there's a legal process that has to be followed to have an animal declared dangerous, and it will require notice to you and a court hearing.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: My dog bite my neighbor but it was very very minor and now she’s asking me for my home owners insurance how do i respond

She continues to walk around the neighborhood and this I received to give her my home Insurance

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Mar 10, 2021

You have 3 choices:

1) give her your insurance information. She'll make a claim, and the insurance company will do their own investigation, and decide whether to pay the claim. Remember that you have a deductible amount that you'll be responsible for before the insurance company...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: the lady that was watching our dog won’t give him back. text messages show she agreed to watch him & now she blocked us

a friend of ours agreed to watch our dog while we were relocating. unfortunately we had a falling out and now she won’t give us our dog back and has blocked our numbers. he is not chipped or registered but the text messages between us show that she agreed to watch him and prove he is ours.... Read more »

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Feb 23, 2021

You could try a small claims case to have the court declare ownership of the dog. Gather your evidence and talk to the clerk of the Justice of the Peace court in the precinct where your ex-friend lives.

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: I want to get my cat back but the person blocked me number in Facebook. I have their information but I need answer

I had a cat named Harley and I gave it away a couple nights ago but I want my cat back. They blocked me from Facebook and my number. I have their information but I just need to know what can I do to get my cat back I will pay money for someone to get it legally back to me.

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Feb 23, 2021

Gifts are permanent. If you "gave" the cat to someone, you probably can't get it back. Circumstances may or may not support a different answer.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: i was gifted a dog because the previous owner said she cant give him proper attention but now shes wanting the dog back

he has no chip or shots. do i have to give him back?

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Feb 20, 2021

You have two choices: 1) give the dog back, or 2) don't give the dog back. If you don't, it is unlikely you'll be sued for the dog, because the cost of filing the suit almost certainly exceeds the value of the dog. In the event that there is a suit, the previous owner will have... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: How to adopt a dog?

My boyfriend has had his dog for 6 or 7 years and got her through humane society but under his friends name. He no longer has contact with that friend and doesn’t have any papers for the dog. He wants to get papers for her.

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Feb 20, 2021

Unless the dog is a purebred, there aren't actually any "papers," and probably nothing showing ownership.

If he takes the dog to a vet, he can get it chipped, and if he registers his name and contact information to the chip, that's evidence of ownership, and he can get...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Elder Law, Family Law, Adoption and Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: I’m 18 I got a puppy online and been taking care of it at my grama place I’m going my to my parents but I think there

Planing on giving it away what are my rights?

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Feb 11, 2021

Sorry, no matter how old you are, your parents get to make the rules about what they will allow in their house. If they don't want the puppy, I suggest you arrange another place to stay. No, they shouldn't give away your property, but if you're living at their house, you're... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: Can the vet hospital keep your dog if you can't pay the bill ? (I just borrowed 400$ for dep)

I borrowed 400$ Thursday now they want 257$ or they said I couldn't get my dog till bill paid in full

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Feb 8, 2021

The short answer is yes, they can hold the dog for payment. They're not required to extend credit. Sorry.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: My neighbors dog is pregnant and they have her trapped on the porch and she has been whining.

Also has been scratching at the door for almost 6 hours now. Any other day, they don't care about her. I feed her and water her and pick the ticks off her. I bring her inside when its snowing and raining and super cold or super hot and she just usually roams free. Is there anything I can do?

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Feb 4, 2021

You could offer to adopt the dog - it doesn't sound like they'll miss her.

Alternatively, there are several places you can report animal abuse:

https://crime-stoppers.org/animal-cruelty/

https://apps.harriscountytx.gov/AnimalCruelty/...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Texas on
Q: My dog somehow disappeared from the yard and never returned. We believe we know where she is. What rights do we have?

My dog somehow disappeared from the yard 3 days ago and never returned which is very unlikely. She recently just had a litter of puppies who are not completely weened off and depends on her for feeding. Word of mouth makes us strongly believe we know where she is being housed. If we wanted the... Read more »

Teri A. Walter
Teri A. Walter answered on Jan 27, 2021

You won't know what the cops will agree to do if you don't call them. Tell them what you know that leads you to believe she's at a particular place.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Criminal Law for Texas on
Q: Is it a crime if my 17 years old child takes a dog from my house without permission and refuses to bring the dog back?

Hi, I am divorced mother. My ex and I share custody of our 17 years old daughter. After visit to my house she took my dog out of my house and refuses to bring the dog back. Is it considered a crime? How can I get my dog back?

Rick  Davis
Rick Davis answered on Jan 24, 2021

Were you awarded the dog in the divorce? Did you get the dog after the divorce? Have you tried calling the police?

There is not enough information in your question to definitively answer it.

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