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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27620
Experience:  Attorney with experience in family law.
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Can I father be prevented on taking infant in s home with

Customer Question

can I father be prevented on taking infant in his home with pits bulls and rotweiler
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 12 months ago.

Hi,

I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today.

Can you tell me more about your situation? Is the person objecting to the dogs the child's mother or someone else? Do the dogs have any history of violence? Is there any reason to believe they'd attack someone? Would they be left alone with the infant?

Customer: replied 12 months ago.
my daughter has a 7 month old daughter. The baby mother and father get along great. both are college students and live
at home. My daughter was told the dogs would be locked up which she has seen not happen when picking daughter up. Her
daughter is now crawling and standing up. She fears for her safety being in a home visiting with 1 pit bull and 2 rot's.TThey
are inside dogs and have a not so good history. My daughter got a notice she has been sued and needs to respond. The
father sees daughter all the time just not inside his moms home where he lives. Pit has only growled at my daughter who is
24. The had another rot what got out and mauled attached the neighbors dog but that do is no longer alive. Its a safety issue
for my daughter.
Customer: replied 12 months ago.
oops, don't know anything about there dogs history. I was meaning the basic history of the dogs attacks you hear on the
news and read in the papers.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 12 months ago.

Thank you. Just to clarify, you mean that your daughter is being sued for custody, right? Not anything to do with the dogs' behavior?

Customer: replied 12 months ago.
visitation, he wants to take baby to his house for some weekends. I am guessing every other weekend.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 12 months ago.

Thank you.

The default position in the law is that a child benefits from having a relationship with both parents. But the judge will consider any factor that tends to show that it's not in the best interests of the child to live with a particular parent, or for visits to be at an outside location rather than the home. Since it is legal to have pit bulls or Rottweiler in a home, it's not necessarily enough to say "He has these dogs." He's allowed to have them, and there isn't any law about having dogs and children in the same house. But she can describe what she's seen, express her concerns, and note any interactions that she's seen. She can also request that he be ordered to keep the dogs outside or crated when the child is with him so they're not roaming the house free, at least until the child is a bit older. Then, if he doesn't do it, he's in contempt of court (and she can take pictures to prove it).

She could also request that he be required to take the dogs to obedience training and provide evidence of having done so, which might help her feel better about having the child in his care.

They could also request that a guardian ad litem be appointed. That's a third party who comes out and looks at the home and would interact with the dogs and determine whether the home is safe for the dogs. It's a tough situation when you have a dog owner saying "My dogs aren't violent" and the other parent saying "I'm afraid of these dogs." It could help to have a third party do an evaluation on whether the dogs are dangerous.

If she can list other factors that show why the father shouldn't be allowed to keep the child overnight, that can also help. The judge is required to look at all of the facts of the case, and won't always decide a case based on a single issue. The more reasons she can give him to agree with her, the better.

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