How Much is a Pet Dog Worth in a Court of Law?
Posted Friday, April 15, 2016 by Christopher L. Thayer
Do you know the value of your pet in the eyes of the law? The answer may surprise you.
The Georgia Supreme Court is considering whether a rescue mutt whose death was allegedly caused by a kennel’s negligence had any value — or had a value relative to how the dog’s owners felt about her and the $67,000 they spent to save her.
Americans spent $60 billion on their companion animals last year. A majority of people share their beds with furry friends. People take their dogs to work, create Instagram accounts for them and help them complete bucket lists. People, it’s clear, increasingly think of pets as family — or fellow people.
The law, however, sees pets very differently: They are property, like a car or a toaster.
Now the Supreme Court of Georgia is mulling the disconnect between those two views. In a case that could be decided next month, judges are considering whether a rescue mutt whose death was allegedly caused by a kennel’s negligence had the value of a used toaster — zilch — or a value relative to how the dog’s owners felt about her and the $67,000 they spent to save her.
In short: How much is a pet dog worth?
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