6 Legal Tips Every Pet Owner Must Read

Along with the joy and fun pets bring to our lives, they also bring the occasional headache. These tips may help you avoid common legal disputes involving your family pets.

  1. Keep your pet under control at all times. You may be legally responsible for damages caused by your pet, especially if your pet has a history of biting humans, attacking other pets or showing a vicious character. 
  2. Follow your state and local laws regarding pet ownership.
    • Does your locality have a leash law? If so, what does it require? Does your locality require a pet tag or license and various inoculations? Complying with pet laws will help you avoid citations and court appearances. 
    • Does your locality enforce pet "nuisance laws"? These may include ordinances prohibiting excessive barking and require cleaning up after your pets. Complying with these rules will also help you avoid fines and potential problems with neighbors.
    • Do you intend to breed your pet? Laws governing breeding vary greatly between localities and states. If you plan to breed your pet make sure you understand the laws or rules in your locality.
  3. If you rent a home or apartment review the terms of your lease in regards to pets. Do you have to pay an additional security deposit? Is there a limit on the number or weight of pets you can have on the property? Understand the terms before you sign a lease or acquire a pet. If you live in a neighborhood governed by a home owners association (HOA) it is important to review the bylaws for pet restrictions or regulations.
  4. Read all pet insurance terms and conditions before you sign up to determine if the policy covers events that concern you most.Review the cost of the policy and talk to your vet about the typical treatments associated with the care of your animal. If you need assistance reviewing the terms of a pet insurance policy contact your LegalShield provider law firm.
  5. Stay calm and rational when involved in a disagreement over a pet. Whether you are the pet owner or have been injured by someone else's pet, it is important to handle the situation in a civil manner. Pet disputes can escalate quickly and lead to prolonged and unnecessary legal actions.
  6. Generally speaking, it is not recommended to put instructions for the care of a family pet in your Will. If you are concerned about planning for your pet's care after your death, call your LegalShield provider law firm to discuss your options with an attorney who understands the laws in your state or province.
Telhio is proud to partner with LegalShield to provide this valuable information to our members. You also have access to discounts on legal and identity theft services as a Telhio member. Click here for more information.

Return to the news archive