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TexLaw, Attorney
Category: Legal
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Experience:  Lead trial/International commercial attorney licensed 11 yrs
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I purchased a dog from a friend via a breeder in Texas. There

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I purchased a dog from a friend via a breeder in Texas. There were two puppies shipped. The one I wanted was very lethargic and the breeder kept assuring me that it was from the trauma of the plane ride. The other puppy recovered very quickly and it was obvious to me and other people that the puppy was ill. I took him to a Florida vet that told me the puppy was ill when it was put on the plane, He had bronchitis and intestinal parasites. The breeder and the friend kept insisint that the vet was trying to rip me off and nothing was wrong with the dog. I was so concerned for Ceasar that I was going to buy both puppies in case he might be depressed of something. After spending over $700 to get the puppy well the friend came over and asked for the dog back to take it to another vet. I said no but that I would be willing to meet her at the vet with the dog to which she declined. The next thing they wanted the puppy back and I refused because I am attached to Ceasar . The only thing I asked from them was to have the vet bills reimburesed. The breeder informs me that the deal was between me and the friend even though the friend was acting as a broker for the sale of the dogs. I am trying to understand what rights, if any, do I have under the Florida Pet Lemon Law?
How did you find out about the dog?

Did you buy it from your friend in Florida who ordered it from Texas?

In other words, did the transaction take place in Florida or in Texas?
TexLaw, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 4430
Experience: Lead trial/International commercial attorney licensed 11 yrs
TexLaw and 12 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The transaction took place in Florida

Tell me more about the underlying transaction. You paid your friend who ordered the dog from Texas, right?

Does your friend regularly deal in pets?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No she doesn't. She wanted to start breeding these dogs.

I am assuming that the dogs were not accompanied with an official veterinarian certificate either.

Under Florida law, you have the right to reimbursement of the veterinarian costs up to the price of the dog. In order to obtain this, you must have the veterinarian sign a statutory statement of unfitness (that the dog was ill when brought into the state).

Under the law, the breeder has the right to have a vet inspect the dog as well.

The problem will be that if the breeder does not agree to reimburse you the vet expenses up to the cost of the dog, then you would have to sue the breeder. Your friend is not a dealer and the law does not apply to your friend. The court may find that the breeder is not under Florida jurisdiction (did the breeder solicit the dog to you, or is this just someone that your friend knew who does not regularly sell in Florida?). The court could also find that your friend, who was acting as broker, actually disqualified the transaction under Florida law. I tell you this because I want you to understand the issues going into this kind of case.

You could assert that you friend was acting as the agent for the Texas breeder, and sue both of them in small claims court. That is going to be your best route if you end up having to sue.

If you sue, you would simply state that they violated Florida Statute 828.29 in that (1) they sold a dog in Florida without a veterinarian certificate; (2) they misrepresented the health of the dog; and (3) the dog was in an unfit condition as certified by a Florida licensed veterinarian. Then you would show your vet bills and ask for payment. The court should award you with a judgment for payment.

Please let me know if you have further questions. Please also consider rating my answer positively so that I am compensated by the website for my work on your question.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The breeder did not solicit me my friend was caring for the breeder's dying mother and while working made the transacations to sell Ceasar to me. As for the last points of your answer, they did misrepresent Ceasar's health and the vet, and her partners who also examined him, that I took Ceasar to are more than willing to supply information with regard to him being in an unfit condition. I have just one hiccup for you. I remember seeing only one vet certificate for both dogs. Will this be a problem?

Well, the biggest problem is going to be bringing the breeder under Florida jurisdiction.

When you say that there is only one veterinarian certificate, do you mean that there was a certificate given to you by your friend/the breeder when you received the dogs?

If so, was the certificate from a Florida certified vet?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

When I had both dogs I only saw and was given only one certificate which was not signed by a Florida vet

Then this confirms the violation that I'm citing as the first claim in your small claims lawsuit. The breeder should have made sure that the dogs were certified by a Florida Vet pursuant to the statute.

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