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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 116816
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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Need to find out laws concerning dogs in the State of,

Customer Question

Need to find out laws concerning dogs in the State of Washington, especially in Vancouver, WA (just across the border from Portland in southern Washington). What are the laws concerning ownership rights and confiscation of animals. We, this dogs breeder and I, co-own a dog which has turned out to be in a poor home. We are legal co-owners of the dog and would like to get the dog back. Can you help us by citing what laws might apply? Helen XXXXXX, the dog's breeder and I (Laurel XXXXXX) live in northern California and in New Mexico respectively. We are pursuing possible ways of removing the dog from this home. Laurel XXXXXX, Albuquerque, NM
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

Dogs in WA are considered property, no different than your car or your TV set. The animals are treated as property under the common law that applies to all property in WA (meaning there are no statutes, it is based on what applies in the common law). If you and co-breeder are still owners of the dog and have proof of ownership, then you have a right to have the dog in your possession. If the current party who has the dog has not bought the dog or has some contract in writing with you that allows you to retain ownership, then you can recover the dog by suing for "replevin" in WA, which is the common law tort for "return of property" and seek a court order to return the dog to you as owners.