My Neighbor Killed My Dog!

My neighbor and I have been fighting about my dog for years.  My dog stayed in my yard, but it barked a lot because the kids in the neighborhood would torment it.  

Anyway, I woke up this morning and my dog was dead.  I looked in his dog bowl and there was some substance mixed in with the food.  I took it to my vet and she said that the substance was rat poison and that  my dog ate it and bleed to death internally.  

I asked my neighbor about it and he just laughed.  I went to the hardware store in town and the lady that owns it said my neighbor was in there two days ago and bought some rat poison.

Can I sue him?  I loved my dog and I don’t think it is right that my neighbor killed it.

Yes, you can sue for the loss of your dog.  To win your case, you have to be able to prove more likely than not that your neighbor killed your dog.  You then must be able to prove the value of your dog.  

Tennessee law also permits you to recover up to $5000 for the compensation for the loss of the reasonably expected society, companionship, love and affection of your dog when the dog’s death occurs under the circumstances you have described.   The recovery of this type of damage is permitted by T. C. A. Sec. 47-14-403.

There are a couple of other relevant factors for you to consider.   You must prove not only that your neighbor killed put poison in your dog’s food  but  also how the dog died.  This will require proof from your vet. You may have to reimburse your vet for her time in coming to court to testify, and that may be expensive.

Second, it makes little sense to sue someone who does not have the ability to pay the money you can win if you are successful in your case.  In other words, make sure that the person you sue has the resources to pay.

Finally, you may have difficulty finding lawyer to help you in this matter and, if you do, it may cost you more money that it is worth to pursue this case.  Make sure you understand what.it will cost you to pursue this case before you file a lawsuit.