Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?
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Thread: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

  1. #21
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    From my understanding this law would simply take animals out of the category of "property", and call for accountability for those who injure or kill them out of malice or negligence (and through abuse, naturally). Nothing much to "need" to think about there, I should hope!

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  3. #22
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Quote Originally Posted by winniec777 View Post
    I was not referring to the dog's value but to your hero's attempt to place a value on feelings for the dog and any grief associated with its death. "i'm in such pain and suffering so badly, you'll never understa....oh wait. You're giving me $25,000? I guess you DO understand! I'm good."
    This ^
    I guess I just don't see how the money automatically makes things better. Yes maybe you had vet bills/etc. associated with it, bu then you would be suing for those instead of "loss and grief". I can't see putting a price tag on my dog, no matter the amount, after he's passed, no matter the circumstances.

    All any one is really saying is once the dogs lose the "property" title, it opens the doors to all sorts of other problems. Here's a hypothetical, just per-say.
    Dogs are no longer property, and as such the "gubment" has decided all dogs must be fixed by 8 weeks, no exception. Your (the general your not you persay) puppy goes in to get spayed and the vet fudges it up and she dies on the table. In a round about way the law that changed dogs from property to family, killed the dog.

    I don't know. I know thats extreme but I don't agree with changing. But everyone has opinions and we're all entitled to our own.

  4. #23
    Senior Member zimandtakandgrrandmimi's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    my dog is the same as my leg. both belong to me and both i would go to extreme lengths to see healthy and well cared for and feeling the best that they can.

  5. #24
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Sometimes, by just changing something that may SEEM simple and well intentioned, it opens up the door to over regulation. There have been many times in our country's history where "simple" and "well meaning" changes have been introduced, really by people who truly are caring and have the best of intentions.

    BUT, unfortunately, not everyone in the postion to introduce or change laws have those same intentions. And, even what was seen as a simple change that would really only affect one type of situation, once it becomes law, is now opened up to scrutiny, and judgement, and, yes, regulation. So, the once simple change now has many more ramifications than the original proposer intended.

    Frankly, we see it in our constitution. What the Founding Fathers intended isn't necessarily how our Constitution is interpreted today.

    I have read many posts by some of the people replying to this thread, and have come to believe that people here are very caring, and care deeply about their dogs. I also feel that many people here think of their dogs as family members. But, I think, they also may have a suspicion that, in our judicial and litigious society, people OTHER than the vet who is proposing this change might not keep this change as simple as it is intended.

    So, if using the term "property" keeps our dogs' care in our hands, instead of being in the hands of others who may not share our opinions, I say, call them "property" in public terms, but I will always think of them as part of our family inside our home.

  6. #25
    Senior Member ChaosIsAWeim's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Too many laws are open for interpretation, this one would not be an exception. Look at the NYC tethering law that got passed, the wording is so vague, that if one wanted to interpret it, they could say anyone walking a dog on a chain for any given time is in violation of that law, basically making it cruel to walk your dog on a chain collar.

    The wording of this may not be as vague as the tethering law, but I am sure someone would interpret the wording differently then what it is intended. Plus adding more laws, opens the door for more ridiculous laws to get passed, there are too many laws period. Letting this law pass, however well intentioned it is, will open a can of worms.
    Last edited by ChaosIsAWeim; 04-03-2011 at 12:21 PM.

  7. #26
    Senior Member KBLover's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Quote Originally Posted by doxiemommy View Post
    So, if using the term "property" keeps our dogs' care in our hands, instead of being in the hands of others who may not share our opinions, I say, call them "property" in public terms, but I will always think of them as part of our family inside our home.
    This is my view, too.

    Wally is not my "property" like the grass in my lawn or the computer I type on. I consider him higher up than that. I won't get into a fight over someone walking on my grass but if someone tried to hurt Wally - my next post will be from Virginia State Prison.

    So I consider dogs to be a part of people's families and/or employees (for those that have working dogs), but for purposes of law - I "accept" the term "property", for lack of a better option.
    Last edited by KBLover; 04-03-2011 at 01:32 PM.

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  8. #27
    Senior Member JohnnyBandit's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Quote Originally Posted by animalrbetterthanpeople View Post
    I want to bring to your attention a veterinarian in the state of FL who is going against his ENTIRE profession to do what is RIGHT. He is attempting (through legislation, "Gracie's Law", ) to elevate the status of companion animals under the law. As you can well imagine, it is not a popular stance in the veterinary profession.
    I do not post on Facebook, but I know that a lot of you do. He has his own Facebook Page, as well as a website. He has written a book, "Meet Me At the Rainbow Bridge, which I have read and treasure.
    It takes a very brave man to risk the "alienation " of those in his profession to do what is right. If you read his book, you will find that he is truly one of a kind...a man not afraid of going against the grain and standing up for what he believes in, and what I believe every pet parent knows in his/her soul is right. As he points out, at one time, women and slaves were considered "property", too. They have overcome that status, and so should our beloved companion animals.
    I am humbly and respectfully asking each of you who agrees that pets are NOT "property", but family members, to do all that you can to get the word out, both about his book, and about supporting Gracie's Law. I do not know this man, but after I read his book, I have corresponded with him (when my computer co-operates) and I can tell you, that he is the "real deal."
    From my understanding this law would simply take animals out of the category of "property", and call for accountability for those who injure or kill them out of malice or negligence (and through abuse, naturally). Nothing much to "need" to think about there, I should hope! Once that is done, laws can be crafted to reflect the respect for these domestic pets - and hopefully toughen the now far too lenient laws governing punishment for abuse and malicious harm to animals. Again, not much to "think about" there for any pet lover!

    I hope that you will read his petition and consider signing it to support "Gracie's Law". Thanks so very much for taking the time to do this.

    animalrbetterthanpeople

    Here are some links for you to peruse:
    http://www.meetmeattherainbowbridge.com/
    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Gracie...49886541734465
    http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/Gra...-not-Property/
    This type of law is a BAD idea.... EVERY respectable dog organization in the state is against it. It is a shame because once again the people and organizations of Florida (I am a Florida Resident and a member of several organizations, President of one.) are forced to divert funds that could be used for rescue, low cost spay and neuter programs, etc into fighting legislation to protect their rights as dog owners.

    There is a lot to think about as a pet lover. This little law will increase the already high cost of dog ownership ten fold. The second dogs go from being property to having human "like" rights, Healthcare, food costs, supply costs, all go up. Not a little bit. But Many many times. Think ten fold is an exageration? Do a little research.....
    Compare what a MD pays in Malpractice and Liability insurance compared to a Vet. Compare product liability insurance rates for food and products for dogs compared to products for humans.

    Are you capable of spending in excess of a hundred grand for a ten to twelve year lifetime of dog?
    If not, then you should not support this law.... It is as simple as that.

    Laws don't change the misdeeds of man. If they did, we would have very little crime, no murders, not even any speeding tickets. There would be little need for courts, police, attorneys, etc.
    People are still going to be bad to animals. Still be neglectful, etc.

    This entire "gracies law" business is the result of thinking with one's heart rather than their brain. Hearing the words feel good. But the writers and supporters of this law are being idealistic rather than realistic.

    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosIsAWeim View Post
    And I know this statement, may ruffle the feathers of others, but technically you are not rescuing when you go to a shelter, the dogs are already rescued from wherever they came from. Yes there are kill shelters, but what about non-kill shelters are you rescuing from them as well? What about private rescues/breed specific rescues, are you rescuing from them as well?

    To me the dogs are already rescued, by the people that took them from their abusive/neglectful/etc owners, you are just giving that said dog a second chance.

    You are putting a price on that dog, once money is exchanged.
    Unless you go out in a swollen river and drag your dog to shore, pluck the dog off a ledge on a mountainside, etc..... You did not rescue it. And you did not adopt it.

    Dogs are obtained in three ways.... You bought the dog.....Whether is be a store, a breeder, a shelter, an animal control. If money is exchanged it is a purchase. This includes barter. Or.... You found a dog and kept it...... Or someone gives you the dog(no money or services exchanged)
    Last edited by JohnnyBandit; 04-03-2011 at 01:52 PM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
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  9. #28
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Quote Originally Posted by sassafras View Post
    I think this type of law, while well-intentioned, will actually have unforeseen consequences that will be harmful to pets and pet owners in the long run. If your dog is no longer your property, the government and other people ultimately will have a say in controlling things that are almost entirely (anti-cruelty laws excepted) your choice now -- everything from what to feed to when/if you spay/neuter to what type of medical care you choose for your pet to end of life decisions. It's not worth it to be able to sue people for big money damages IMO.
    I couldn't have said this better myself, so I'll just say I agree. I have a lot of respect for those who go against the grain, but it doesn't mean I have to agree with their stance (especially on this particular issue). Children aren't property because kids eventually grow up and make lives of their own. Dogs do not. I love my dogs as much as the next person, but I'm not for Animal Rights.

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnnyBandit View Post
    This type of law is a BAD idea.... EVERY respectable dog organization in the state is against it. It is a shame because once again the people and organizations of Florida (I am a Florida Resident and a member of several organizations, President of one.) are forced to divert funds that could be used for rescue, low cost spay and neuter programs, etc into fighting legislation to protect their rights as dog owners.

    There is a lot to think about as a pet lover. This little law will increase the already high cost of dog ownership ten fold. The second dogs go from being property to having human "like" rights, Healthcare, food costs, supply costs, all go up. Not a little bit. But Many many times. Think ten fold is an exageration? Do a little research.....
    Compare what a MD pays in Malpractice and Liability insurance compared to a Vet. Compare product liability insurance rates for food and products for dogs compared to products for humans.

    Are you capable of spending in excess of a hundred grand for a ten to twelve year lifetime of dog?
    If not, then you should not support this law.... It is as simple as that.

    Laws don't change the misdeeds of man. If they did, we would have very little crime, no murders, not even any speeding tickets. There would be little need for courts, police, attorneys, etc.
    People are still going to be bad to animals. Still be neglectful, etc.

    This entire "gracies law" business is the result of thinking with one's heart rather than their brain. Hearing the words feel good. But the writers and supporters of this law are being idealistic rather than realistic.



    Unless you go out in a swollen river and drag your dog to shore, pluck the dog off a ledge on a mountainside, etc..... You did not rescue it. And you did not adopt it.

    Dogs are obtained in three ways.... You bought the dog.....Whether is be a store, a breeder, a shelter, an animal control. If money is exchanged it is a purchase. This includes barter. Or.... You found a dog and kept it...... Or someone gives you the dog(no money or services exchanged)
    *Applause*
    I call Tag a "rescue" dog, but I know he's not. I didn't save him from anything except living with another family.
    Last edited by LazyGRanch713; 04-03-2011 at 02:03 PM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost

  10. #29
    Senior Member CoverTune's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Quote Originally Posted by winniec777 View Post
    I was not referring to the dog's value but to your hero's attempt to place a value on feelings for the dog and any grief associated with its death. "i'm in such pain and suffering so badly, you'll never understa....oh wait. You're giving me $25,000? I guess you DO understand! I'm good."
    This. You just can't put a price tag on a loss, and doing so solves/fixes nothing.


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  11. #30
    Senior Member Crantastic's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Quote Originally Posted by KBLover View Post
    Wally is not my "property" like the grass in my lawn or the computer I type on. I consider him higher up than that. I won't get into a fight over someone walking on my grass but if someone tried to hurt Wally - my next post will be from Virginia State Prison.

    So I consider dogs to be a part of people's families and/or employees (for those that have working dogs), but for purposes of law - I "accept" the term "property", for lack of a better option.
    This is how I feel about my dogs, too. I certainly consider them to be on a higher level than my computer or TV, and I definitely love them, but I do own them. I paid money for them and I am responsible for caring for them and making decisions for them until they die. I want to be able to decide what to feed them, how often to vaccinate, when to spay or neuter, how to train... I don't need extra legislation telling me how to care for my own pets.

    I would like to see harsher penalties for those who abuse animals, but I'm not going to pretend to know enough about law to suggest anything.

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  12. #31
    Senior Member cynster's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    And actually - that law is kind of pointless, because you -can- sue for emotional distress anyway. I know the Geico guy said there was no way - maybe not with car insurance, but it's been done before and it's perfectly legal to sue for emotional distress - you just need to prove it, and I don't see anything wrong with requiring someone to provide sufficient evidence.

  13. #32
    Senior Member BrittanieJo's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    My dog is like my daughter, however I have to agree with the idea that this is going to raise vet costs substantially and to be perfectly honest I know plenty of people who have sued their vet for damages in civil court and won back at least the cost of the dog and the care. In one case a friend got a vets license revoked because of animal cruelty charges (they were cropping ears incorrectly amongst other things). There is already legal recourse if something were to happen to your dog, is it 25,000 dollars? No. But I know that NO amount of money is going to make me feel better if something happens to Aggie. By putting a number on her head I personally think you've just MADE her property. Just like life insurance, nothing is going to make you feel better that someone you loved died and thats NOT the purpose of life insurance, the purpose is to take care of the COST of the person dying for bills, funeral etc. Hence my friends winning back cost of the money they spent on the dogs care. Lets spend this money taking care of the animals we have now, low cost spay clinics, enforcing animal cruelty laws...these are valuable ways to spend money IMO.

  14. #33
    Super Moderator RonE's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    It would seem to me that such a law might say I cannot euthanize a dog who is suffering, even though the dog and I both know it's time to perform that one last kindness. After all, I can't euthanize other family members (in most jurisdictions.)

    Normally, a first post with no introduction but with links and a petition and an agenda would be deleted, according to the forum rules. If the poster persisted, he would be banned. But this is an interesting discussion and, as long as it can remain civil, I'd personally like to see it continue.

  15. #34
    Senior Member RaeganW's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shaina View Post
    My first priority is the welfare of my pets.

    The best way for me to ensure their welfare is for them to remain my property.

    BTW, welcome to the forum -- participating before pushing your particular agenda is usually well-advised.
    Quoted for truth and agreement.

  16. #35
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Quote Originally Posted by animalrbetterthanpeople View Post
    Here is the proposed law, as it stands. It was listed on the facebook page of Dr. Newman. There is no "legal document" because it is not yet law. Dr. Newman already has a proposed sponser, and I hope that he is successful in his endeavor. I am not trying to be flippant or rude or offensive. It's just that unless you have actually lost a dog to malpractice, negligence, etc., it's really, really hard to comprehend. It's hard enough losing a companion animal when it's a "natural" death or when they are ill, suffering or have to be euthanized. But losing one before their time is traumatic, and I can tell you firsthand that it's one of the hardest things that I have ever gone through in my life, other than the death of a human loved one. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to post this and for at least looking for it. I appreciate all of the comments, even those who are not in accord.

    http://www.facebook.com/topic.php?ui...4778&topic=207

    To recognize the emotional bond that exists between pets and people, the human animal bond, this law entitles the owner of a pet that is deliberately killed through an act of malice or accidentally killed through an act of negligence to the sum of $25,000 for loss of companionship and pain and suffering, plus all legal fees required to prove the negligence or malice. This law does not supersede the laws already in existence which entitles the pet owner to the value of their pet as property. In the case of an act of malice, all laws relating to criminal prosecution remain in effect. A veterinarian who prescribes an appropriate medical or surgical plan by community standard that is declined by the owner of the pet would not be held accountable under this law, should the medical record state that the owner of the pet declined the appropriate treatment.
    I HAVE lost a beloved dog by following the advice of a vet. He was as brokenhearted as I was. He cares. That's all the recompense I really needed from him. No amount of money would make it better. He is still my vet, I trust him, and would never consider suing.
    Amy

  17. #36
    Senior Member RaeganW's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Quote Originally Posted by animalrbetterthanpeople View Post
    Shania, I guess it's all a matter of opinion, and of past experience as well. As the saying goes, one does not understand until one has walked a mile in the other person's shoes. If you had lost a dog to vet malpractice, or as Dr.. Newman did (if you read his website, you will see what happened, not only to Gracie, but to him). perhaps you might feel differently.
    And I'm sure children have been hurt and patients died because of medical malpractice. Just because they aren't property doesn't protect them from the world.

    Part of the reason that the anti-cruelty law are NOT enforced is precisely BECAUSE animals are considered as property. I am not saying that you or anyone else doesn't love their dog, just saying that I don't understand the rationale for NOT supporting this law. Did you read the law? Again, not trying to insult you, just asking if you actually read it as it stands.
    No... most anti-cruelty laws aren't enforced because there isn't money to do so. It isn't because people don't love animals, it's because they also like to drive on roads, have a police force that protects humans from violent crimes, and have schools for their children to attend. Distribution of govenment funds is kind of a heated debate right now. In an era where millions of dollars are being cut from public schools, do you really want the government to tell you how to own your animals?

  18. #37
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    animalsrbetterthenpeople>> hey I take mild offence to being told that since I don't support BSL... Which is what this is. There is just too much grey area for the govt to take advantage, I have enough govt nosing around in my business thenks. I would like to have a law like this, but one written so there isn't any margen for lawmakers abuse.

    FYI... There are things like good pet insurance & forms one signs at the vet that protect both vet & you against malpractice... The key is to read the fine print in the forms you sign.

  19. #38
    Senior Member winniec777's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Quote Originally Posted by RonE View Post
    It would seem to me that such a law might say I cannot euthanize a dog who is suffering, even though the dog and I both know it's time to perform that one last kindness. After all, I can't euthanize other family members (in most jurisdictions.)
    This is really starting to get to the heart of the matter: if my dog is not property, what is she and what are her rights and how the heck do you start enumerating those? Can she vote? Does she enjoy equal protection? How would we determine her wishes in Ron's euthanasia example? Would dogs need to have a living will and a legal patient advocate? It just gets so absurd so quickly.

    I'm not crazy about applying the word "property" to my dog, but such definitions are needed so that we all can get along without killing each other. So there are humans and there is property. Humans have rights, property is protected, at least in a civil society. If you start giving rights to non-human things, where do you stop?

  20. #39
    Super Moderator RonE's Avatar
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Bottom line for me is this: Would Esther have to pay taxes or could I claim her as a dependent?

    If my vet has to start carrying millions of dollars in malpractice insurance, I would expect my routine office visits to start running $300 and up. Of course, if I can add my dogs to my family's medical insurance plan, I guess it will all work out fabulously, just like our national healthcare system currently does.

    Would my dog's qualify for Medicare once they reach age 65 in dog years?

    My human children are gradually becoming independent. They get jobs, they buy their own insurance, they pay taxes, they make their own mistakes and they pay the consequences. When they do something right, they reap their own rewards.

    Somehow, I don't see that happening with my canines. They will remain property, however precious, and I will protect them and watch over them. They are part of the family, but I would not insult them by humanizing them.

  21. #40
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    Re: Do you think of your dog as a family member or property?

    Quote Originally Posted by KBLover View Post
    This is my view, too.

    Wally is not my "property" like the grass in my lawn or the computer I type on. I consider him higher up than that. I won't get into a fight over someone walking on my grass but if someone tried to hurt Wally - my next post will be from Virginia State Prison.

    So I consider dogs to be a part of people's families and/or employees (for those that have working dogs), but for purposes of law - I "accept" the term "property", for lack of a better option.
    KBlover I don't know why anyone would want to hurt Wally, heeza so cute . But yrs I agree, as my dogs provider, caretaker & guardian (just like a kid I suppose) what I would like to see is more done to combat anti breed prejudice as well as dog bites. Yes I know some are the fault of the owner, letting a dog run lose etc... But what about a dog in their own property bites someone, even if the owner has a sign posted & some stupid kid hops a fence after a ball? Mine would probably bark but not see that particular kid as a threat. But what about the bratty kid who insists on pestering the dog even after they are warned, what then?

    Don't mean to hijack the thread... Just sayin' :S

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