Not really horse law, but maybe someone has some idea? (dog shot) - Page 2

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Not really horse law, but maybe someone has some idea? (dog shot)

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    09-13-2011, 11:51 PM
Green Broke
How come cops have the right to fire on a dog if they charge at them? But we can't protect ourselves?
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    09-14-2011, 12:13 AM
If a dog is attacking you and you shoot it, you will probably be fine. Assuming it was big enough to do damage...shoot a Charging Chihuahua, and you may have a problem!

    09-14-2011, 12:18 AM
In my area, it's much the same as what other people have quoted. If the dog is on your property and you either feel threatened or if said dog is harassing your livestock (and that includes barking at them from outside the fence so long as dog is still on your property), then you are completely within your rights to shoot said dog.

Did you report the other instances of the dog getting out and killing your fowl and injuring your goat?

BSMS, I don't know. Those ankle biters can be vicious.
    09-14-2011, 12:26 AM
Green Broke
It depends on the laws of your state/county.

However - even with that said it doesn't mean that a lawyer will take on a lawsuit. KY law allows for shooting of a dog if it is harassing livestock or attacking a human.

A co-worker's dog crossed the neighbors property line (they were out with her) and the guy shot her from his bedroom window. The owners weren't too far from the dog so if the bullet had strayed he was even endangering humans. This neighbor had no livestock or other animals and the dog really had just crossed the tree line. Under KY law there was no legal reason the guy could shoot the dog. The officer even said that but said all they could do is make sure it was all documented in a report. They would have to pursue it via a lawyer.

Went to a lawyer and it went no where. Its just on file now so that if this guy shoots another person's dog then that person will have a stronger case and may be able to take it somewhere.
    09-14-2011, 08:44 AM
Glad you have a report from the previous times the dog caused problems. Properly reporting that was very smart of you.

It is sad this dog was owned by such careless people.

Why do you say in your OP that you are not allowed to shoot a dog that you feel is threatening you? Curious the basis for that statement.

Vet bills plus the cost of their very valuable (cough cough) dog probably will still be with in the limits of small claims court. If they do decided to sue you it will be kind of the luck of the draw. Small claims kind of depends on the judge you get and their willingness to look at actual law vs. what sounds right.

Do you have other neighbors who have had a problem with this dog too? Are they willing to come to court and state this? Have they made police reports when it has happened?
    09-14-2011, 11:46 AM
Because we were having so many problems with this dog (coming over daily for months at one point) we went to a town meeting a couple years ago regarding problems with dogs. We live in a somewheat rural area and it is a common problem around here. At the meeting they had a few speakers, one being someone from the Sheriff's Office. I had tried calling to report the dog on a couple of occasions and was told there was nothing at all they could do. The guy at the meeting said this was not true and sent an officer out the next day to take a report.

Anyway, it was during this meeting everyone was informed of the laws, including that it was legal to shoot a dog "worrying" livestock, but that if the dog was to attack your child (or any person) it it not legal to shoot the dog and you will be charged with animal cruelty. So we did see that part coming. The speaker also said that it would be up to the DA regarding wether or not charges would be pressed based on the individual case. He said it would likely be dropped in the case of shooting a dog (especially with a previous history) to defend yourself from it. When the officer came to take the report after this meeting he reconfirmed all of this.

We do have other neighbors who have had problems with this same dog, but we are one of only a couple people in the neighborhood with livestock. Also, it seems as soon as the word "lawsuit" is mentioned suddenly no one wants to talk anymore.
    09-14-2011, 12:27 PM
Originally Posted by ElizabethM    
... if the dog was to attack your child (or any person) it it not legal to shoot the dog and you will be charged with animal cruelty...
I don't think there is a chance in Hades of that being correct. It is legal to shoot humans to protect yourself or others in most states.

"18-1-704. Use of physical force in defense of a person

Except as provided in subsections (2) and (3) of this section, a person is justified in using physical force upon another person in order to defend himself or a third person from what he reasonably believes to be the use of imminent use of unlawful physical force by that other person, and he may use a degree of force which he reasonably believes to be necessary for that purpose.

Deadly physical force may be used only if a person reasonably believes a lesser degree of force is inadequate and:

The actor has reasonable ground to believe and does believe, that he or another person is in imminent danger of being killed or of receiving great bodily injury"

Sheriff's Office - Colorado Revised Statutes - Jefferson County, Colorado

I'm sure all shootings, dog & man, are reviewed to make sure they were valid.

If an angry Chihuahua is after you, shooting will get you in trouble. If it is a 200 lb Rottie who is after you, I'd bet the law will leave you alone. In any case, I'd use whatever force I thought needed to protect my family or myself.
    09-14-2011, 12:31 PM
Originally Posted by ElizabethM    

We do have other neighbors who have had problems with this same dog, but we are one of only a couple people in the neighborhood with livestock. Also, it seems as soon as the word "lawsuit" is mentioned suddenly no one wants to talk anymore.
Did anyone else file a report?

Really, none of them are willing to support you if these idiots file a lawsuit?

I too am not sure I believe the police officer about it not being legal to shoot a dog that is attacking you. Do you have a lawyer you can ask for clarification on this?
    09-14-2011, 12:41 PM
I am quite sure of it. Each Sherrif's Officer we have spoken with (4 at this point) has confirmed it as well as our local Humane Society and police department. Each did say that in the case of defending yourself against a dog the charges would likely be dropped, but they must charge you with animal cruelty at the time of the shooting so the case can be reviewed.

I am not sure how to go about finding reports made by anyone else.

The dog was a large male boxer of about 80 lbs or more.
    09-14-2011, 12:44 PM
I think there is a difference between them being allowed to file animal cruelty charges against you and it being unlawful to shoot a dog that is attacking you.

Civilly I doubt anyone could collect if you shot their animal that was attacking you (if you were on your own property and did not provoke the attack obviously).

That is the point I am trying to make.

Animal cruelty laws are written very strangely and you could be charged with animal cruelty if you choose to put your dog down by one shot to the head. Which is about as illogical as it gets.

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