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Chris The Lawyer
Chris The Lawyer, Lawyer
Category: New Zealand Law
Satisfied Customers: 22324
Experience:  37 years qualified as a lawyer; LLB, MMgt and FAMINZ.
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A couple of weeks ago our dog (Greyhound) attacked the

Customer Question

Hi. A couple of weeks ago our dog (Greyhound) attacked the neighbours 5 month old kitten on our property. I managed to get our dog to drop the kitten and then tried to get the kitten thru the fence and while doing this the dog dragged the kitten again so I threw a bucket of water over both the cat and dog. The kitten is still alive and the neighbour called the council who have been around and advised that they are taking no further action as our dog was deemed not dangerous and we have our property secured. The neighbours have now written to us and stated that we are to pay the vet bill and have given us three days to reply with an answer or they will take legal action. Could you please advise what is the best thing to do?
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: New Zealand Law
Expert:  Chris The Lawyer replied 7 months ago.
The Dog Control Act 1996 says:-63 Owner liable for damage done by dog(1) The owner of a dog shall be liable in damages for damage done by the dog, and it shall not be necessary for the person seeking damages to show a previous mischievous propensity in the dog, or the owner’s knowledge of any such mischievous propensity, or that the damage was attributable to neglect on the part of the owner of the dog.
Expert:  Chris The Lawyer replied 7 months ago.
So even if the kitten was on your property the act makes it clear you are liable for any damage which will include the vet bills.
Expert:  Chris The Lawyer replied 7 months ago.
So you will need to negotiate the payment of reasonable vet bills, and if necessary time payments

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