My good friend was taking a cruise and asked if her daughter could stay the week. I have known them for years. She babysits occasionally without any problem. She babysat for me on a Saturday night for 2 hours. We have a dog, a 4-month old yellow lab puppy. I put her in a crate during the night for her safety so that she could not chew on things as puppies do. I’ve instructed my friend’s daughter to do the same, to keep her in the crate. She took the dog out to go to the bathroom but didn’t put her in a crate. When they were asleep, the dog chewed on art supplies and started to eat wooden rulers. The dog has ingested cobalt and she is in vet ICU. Can I sue for damages for my dog that’s almost dying?


A plaintiff may recover compensatory damages for personal property loss proximately caused by defendant’s negligent or otherwise wrongful act or omission. Moreover, a plaintiff may recover reasonable and necessary out-of-pocket veterinary care expenses incurred as a result of tortious injury to a pet. Although a pet is personal property, damages for veterinary care are not limited to diminution of the pet’s value which, in the case of many pets, is negligible. Rather, the measure of damages is determined under i.e., “the amount which will compensate for all the detriment” caused by defendant   [Kimes v. Grosser (2011)] has no application “to prevent proof of out-of-pocket expenses to save the life of a pet cat” intentionally shot with pellet gun by plaintiff’s neighbor. A proof of the property’s value just prior to the accident, or of the difference in value before and after the accident, can be shown by opinion of persons familiar with the value of that item—i.e., expert witnesses, such as car salesmen in the case of vehicle damage. It would be best to seek personal assistance from a lawyer to help you in filing a personal injury claim.

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