I run a boarding facility for dogs in North Carolina. I had a woman drop by unannounced (no appointment) with a Pitbull we hadn't seen in almost 3 years on February 26th, 2013. She wanted to board him for a week. I had her fill out new paperwork and accepted the dog. To date, I still have the dog. The last time I spoke with her was on April 1st, 2013, where she hung up on me after telling her that she needs to pay half of her bill by noon the next day. She will not answer my phone calls, nor respond to any of my emails. She did send two guys down to the facility about a month ago to ask if we had any "Pitbulls for adoption" and as the dog is not legally (as far as I know) in our possession
, they were told no. She then proceeded to file a report with the dog's microchip company, who then sent out a "MISSING DOG" alert. I called the company and cleared that up, though they could not retract the alert, since it was paid for. The woman has told me time and time again that she has no money, and that she was possibly moving out of state.
I have a rescue willing to take him in, and adopt him out. I am working on a certified letter to send her demanding payment and the pickup of her dog by May 23rd, 2013 - 10 days after the letter is scheduled to be sent - or the dog will be deemed abandoned and in our discretion to rehome/dispose of. The only laws in our state that I know of are listed under "Veterinary facilities" not boarding. I would expect it to act the same for a facility such as ours, but I'm not sure.
Am I on the right path? I know we can take her to small claims
to attempt to collect payment after the dog is in our possession, but what else could she be charged with? Abandonment? Theft of Services
Any assistance would be appreciated.