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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I took in Zeus, I guess prematurely without doing enough research. He didn't work out so well, because he tried to attack my cats constantly..so I rehomed him for a small fee to a lady that really wanted him. I showed her ALL the paperwork I had on him and she came out to get him Friday morning before I went in to work, and she stated that she was going to take him into her vet THAT morning she picked him up. I even e-mailed her a few weeks to see how he was doing and she told me everything was great. I GET THIS E-MAIL YESTERDAY!! So I replied, because it seems so fishy..but I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO!! Now I get the impression that she's going to try to SUE me or something! It's been over a MONTH and she's just NOW telling me that she took him to a vet and he's HW positive? What can I do???


I’m sorry I didn’t receive your e-mail, this is my work address and unfortunately it filters out a lot of incoming mail not within the business. I do not have the $300, I’m sorry. I had no idea that he was HW positive and that it wasn’t a valid certificate. Actually, if you want to SUE someone, really, you should go after the original owner before me. I only had him for a couple of weeks before I had sold him to you, and she never gave me a certificate. Had she given ME one, it would have been dated fine and within the 30 days when he was given to you. I REALLY do apologize!

I DID notice however, that you had listed him several times online trying to sell him, why is it that you never mentioned this before then and on your sales listing for him? I do know the listing is down now, probably because you couldn’t sell him. But I do know you didn’t state any of this information on him in that listing and that he just wasn’t good around your small child.

You also stated that you took him to the vet that morning that you came by and bought him. I’m not a licensed breeder, and had no idea that I was suppose to have a valid certificate, but had you known that as well, I’m sure you wouldn’t have bought him. And I will tell you this. Don’t be discouraged by their estimate for treatments if he really is positive. That is an estimated price over time, not all at once. It’s only because he’d have to come back in for meds/shots, whatever method they’d use.

I’m still not sure why you waited until this long to take him to a vet or to contact me period, which sounds pretty fishy to me. I do not have your $300. I can barely pay my bills, so if it’s just money you’re after..then I’m sorry, I do not have that. Had you really taken him into the vet that day you bought him, like you said you would, you would have found out then and I would have given you your refund. He had valid shot records and recent visit records in that folder, so I doubt he had HWs before I had given him over to you.

Again, I am sorry. If you wish to contact me further, please contact me @ [email protected], not here.
~Robin

From: X
Sent: Monday, September 20, 2010 10:11 AM
To: Robin Harbin
Subject: RE: Zeus

Robin,

My husband and I purchased Zeus from you about a month ago. He is doing fine, however after taking him to the vet this past week it was discovered that he is heart worm positive. After a long discussion with the vet, we found out that treatment for this disease will cost nearly $650.00. I then asked the vet if this is a new condition or had he already had it. Dr. Gideon explained that heart worms are actually given to an animal through mosquitoes. It takes about 6-8 weeks for the larvae to hatch and create worms in the animals blood stream which would make it visible under a microscope for testing. Therefore, this would be a condition that Zeus would have had before we purchased him.

I then gave Dr. Gideon the file you had given me so that she could exam his previous vet records. It was then noted that Zeus did not have a valid Florida Health Certificate at the time of purchase and that he had not had the required heart worm test that would have been necessary to receive the Health Certificate in the first place. Below you will find information that was found stating that animals sold need to have a Florida Health Certificate or the seller is in violation of the law.

(b) The term "official certificate of veterinary inspection" means a legible certificate of veterinary inspection signed by the examining veterinarian licensed by the state of origin and accredited by the United States Department of Agriculture, that shows the age, sex, breed, color, and health record of the dog or cat, the printed or typed names and addresses of the person or business from whom the animal was obtained, the consignor or seller, the consignee or purchaser, and the examining veterinarian, and the veterinarian's license number. The official certificate of veterinary inspection must list all vaccines and deworming medications administered to the dog or cat, including the manufacturer, vaccine, type, lot number, expiration date, and the dates of administration thereof, and must state that the examining veterinarian warrants that, to the best of his or her knowledge, the animal has no sign of contagious or infectious diseases and has no evidence of internal or external parasites, including coccidiosis and ear mites, but excluding fleas and ticks. The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services shall supply the official intrastate certificate of veterinary inspection required by this section at cost.
(c) The examination of each dog and cat by a veterinarian must take place no more than 30 days before the sale within the state. The examination must include, but not be limited to, a fecal test to determine if the dog or cat is free of internal parasites, including hookworms, roundworms, tapeworms, and whipworms. If the examination warrants, the dog or cat must be treated with a specific anthelmintic. In the absence of a definitive parasitic diagnosis, each dog or cat must be given a broad spectrum anthelmintic. Each dog over 6 months of age must also be tested for heartworms. Each cat must also be tested for feline leukemia before being offered for sale in the state. All of these tests must be performed by or under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian, and the results of the tests must be listed on the official certificate of veterinary inspection.


http://www.doacs.state.fl.us/ai/main/pet_main.shtml


I would like a refund of our money so that we may have Zeus treated to clear him of his heart worms. If this situation is made right that would be great. If not I will need to report this incident since it will be costing us hundreds of dollars to make Zeus well again.


Please contact us and let us know if this request is possible. If you would like a copy of the vet records I can fax them to you. We would only like our $300.00 back so that we may begin the treatment on Zeus. Please understand that we are not seeking the whole amount of $650.00. Please respond within 5 business days so that we may figure out what the next step needs to be.


Best Regards,
XXX


P.S. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
 

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How old is Zeus? I'm surprised someone would pay $300 for a dog from a stranger rather than going through a rescue org who can provide the health info (for about the same price.)

I used to foster dogs..and most were HW positive..if the dog has not had the heartworms for very long then the only thing we had to do is start heartworm prevention...and regularly get checkups to make sure it was working. Heartworms are a very slow process..and while it's easy to prevent..if it's caught early enough it's much easier to treat. The treatment for heartworms I know can be very stressful on an animal.

What really matters here is getting the dog the care he needs..and hopefully a stable home where he won't keep getting passed around. It's very stressful for any animal. Maybe you can offer to take him back to your vet and see how progressed the heartworms are? If all they need to do is start prevention..then they don't have to worry about the $650 and you wouldn't have to worry about the $300 and the dog can get the treatment he needs to stay in good health.

I hope he will be all right! I don't know much about the legal stuff..as i'm sure it varies from state to state but hopefully they don't try to sue you. It seems like the money spent on a lawsuit could be put towards the vet bills instead..unless they really are just jerks.
 

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Robin,

It's nearly positive that Zeus came to you with HW. Heart worms take a long time to manifest themselves in the heart and show up on a test. One month is not long enough.

I don't think you have much to worry about. If they do in fact try to sue you, it would be in small claims court. It would cost them more to sue you than to just let the matter go. But if you are worried, call a lawyer and set up a consultation. Pay the fee, go in and talk. You'll know all of your options at that time.
 

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My understanding is that you have to take your dog to the vet within something like three days of purchase to qualify for the lemon law. She is right though, that if he's testing positive for HW, he was most likely positive when you had him.
 

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Did you have an adoption contract with this person? Were you "selling" the dog? Or was it actually a rehoming/adoption fee?

Second, they are threatening you. maybe they feel as if they were wronged by you but the bottom line is they are saying "if you don't do what we want then we're going to turn you in". I would certainly call a lawyer and go in for a consultation. For $50, or whatever the fee is, it could save you alot of trouble in the long run.

If the HW is not severe then they could do a slow kill method which is nothing more than the monthly preventative. You are not responsible for every vet bill this dog incurs. If they weren't prepared to pay the bills then they shouldn't have bought the dog.

I would refund the money and take the dog back before I let them keep him. Especially given the knowledge that they were trying to sell him.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
How old is Zeus? I'm surprised someone would pay $300 for a dog from a stranger rather than going through a rescue org who can provide the health info (for about the same price.)

I used to foster dogs..and most were HW positive..if the dog has not had the heartworms for very long then the only thing we had to do is start heartworm prevention...and regularly get checkups to make sure it was working. Heartworms are a very slow process..and while it's easy to prevent..if it's caught early enough it's much easier to treat. The treatment for heartworms I know can be very stressful on an animal.

What really matters here is getting the dog the care he needs..and hopefully a stable home where he won't keep getting passed around. It's very stressful for any animal. Maybe you can offer to take him back to your vet and see how progressed the heartworms are? If all they need to do is start prevention..then they don't have to worry about the $650 and you wouldn't have to worry about the $300 and the dog can get the treatment he needs to stay in good health.

I hope he will be all right!
I believe he is 4 years now. His vet papers showed all good vet visits and was ON HW preventatives! When I got him, she had just run out of pills, so I would have had to get some more, but I didn't have him long enough to take him to get any, so the new owner SHOULD have
1. taken him to a vet SOONER than she did and
2. SHOULD have gotten more pills for him

I also noted that she breeds or was going to breed her current female GSD..I noticed that she had been listing to stud him out. :(

She breeds other dogs I believe, because I noticed a few other adds online from her. She has recently taken her ads down now, so I can't pull them up for proof!

I just don't know what to do, because I don't have any money, and I feel like she's doing this because SHE can't afford to take care of him when he PROBABLY got HWs within this past month in her care! If he contracted HWs, then the vet she took him to could have told her how long he's had them!
 

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Wow, this sounds like a terrible situation for Zeus. He's being shuffled from home to home, everyone has an issue with him and no one's willing to work on his issues, and now he's HW positive.

Is there a reputable gsd rescue in your area that might be able to take Zack? That would be the best outcome for him. And then perhaps you and the woman who has him could give money towards his HW treatment.

p.s. $300 is not a small rehoming fee, especially for a dog with a major health condition. If I pay $300 for a dog from a rescue that dog is coming to me speutered and HW negative.
 

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I believe he is 4 years now. His vet papers showed all good vet visits and was ON HW preventatives! When I got him, she had just run out of pills, so I would have had to get some more, but I didn't have him long enough to take him to get any, so the new owner SHOULD have
1. taken him to a vet SOONER than she did and
2. SHOULD have gotten more pills for him

I also noted that she breeds or was going to breed her current female GSD..I noticed that she had been listing to stud him out. :(

She breeds other dogs I believe, because I noticed a few other adds online from her. She has recently taken her ads down now, so I can't pull them up for proof!

I just don't know what to do, because I don't have any money, and I feel like she's doing this because SHE can't afford to take care of him when he PROBABLY got HWs within this past month in her care! If he contracted HWs, then the vet she took him to could have told her how long he's had them!
He can not have a HW positive test within a month of contracting them. It takes longer.

Even dogs on HW preventative can get HW's, although it's supposed to be rare that this happens.

Regarding peoples claims that it would cost more to sue than to just treat - this is not reality. In reality, they can sue you for the cost of the dog (you can call it a "rehoming/adoption" fee if you want, but legally you sold property since cash exchanged hands for the property) AND court fees in most states. So they won't be out any money.

Typically speaking, they can't sue for anything in excess of the cost of the dog.

You need to either return their money, or contact an attorney. IMHO it doesn't matter how long you had the dog. You should never place a dog up for adoption (or sell it) if you haven't fully vetted it. It is your responsibilty to ensure that the animal is healthy once it's in your hands, or disclose fully that you haven't done XYZ medical tests for XYZ reason. At that point, it would be on them to ensure the dog is healthy. You can not tell someone a dog doesn't have "x" condition, and require they double check everything.

Regarding their intentions to breed him - I get that this is a ploy for sympathy for you and the dog and to make her the person the forum will not support, but this won't matter legally and all it really goes to show is that you should have conducted a more thorough placement, home visit, and reference/vet checks. Unfortunately if you found this info out now, you could have found it out before, and the dog has already exchanged hands so it's her legal right to breed him if she wants to.

It sounds like for as much as you may not like his new home, they are doing right by him and had him tested for HW's and are going to treat him for them. I can't really fault them for being responsible and testing and treating such a serious medical condition. It is their decision and the vets decision as to HOW they treat him. The "slow kill" method is not supported by many vets (including mine), so simply telling them to put him on HW preventative isn't your right to do.
 

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Wow, this sounds like a terrible situation for Zeus. He's being shuffled from home to home, everyone has an issue with him and no one's willing to work on his issues, and now he's HW positive.
The new owner is treating him, and was responsible enough to test him. I'd say they aren't looking all that bad right now.
 

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He can not have a HW positive test within a month of contracting them. It takes longer.

Even dogs on HW preventative can get HW's, although it's supposed to be rare that this happens.

Regarding peoples claims that it would cost more to sue than to just treat - this is not reality. In reality, they can sue you for the cost of the dog (you can call it a "rehoming/adoption" fee if you want, but legally you sold property since cash exchanged hands for the property) AND court fees in most states. So they won't be out any money.

Typically speaking, they can't sue for anything in excess of the cost of the dog.

You need to either return their money, or contact an attorney. IMHO it doesn't matter how long you had the dog. You should never place a dog up for adoption (or sell it) if you haven't fully vetted it. It is your responsibilty to ensure that the animal is healthy once it's in your hands, or disclose fully that you haven't done XYZ medical tests for XYZ reason. At that point, it would be on them to ensure the dog is healthy. You can not tell someone a dog doesn't have "x" condition, and require they double check everything.

Regarding their intentions to breed him - I get that this is a ploy for sympathy for you and the dog and to make her the person the forum will not support, but this won't matter legally and all it really goes to show is that you should have conducted a more thorough placement, home visit, and reference/vet checks. Unfortunately if you found this info out now, you could have found it out before, and the dog has already exchanged hands so it's her legal right to breed him if she wants to.

It sounds like for as much as you may not like his new home, they are doing right by him and had him tested for HW's and are going to treat him for them. I can't really fault them for being responsible and testing and treating such a serious medical condition. It is their decision and the vets decision as to HOW they treat him. The "slow kill" method is not supported by many vets (including mine), so simply telling them to put him on HW preventative isn't your right to do.
:thumbup: Agree
 

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Please, folks, let's put our energy into figuring out the best situation for this dog. This is a gsd board--we're presumably here because we love the breed. I personally am interested in what's best for Zeus, not the OP. Sorry but I think it's very important that the best interests of the dog (who cannot hire a lawyer or even an advocate) be front and center.

If the person who has Zeus now has really tried to rehome him through CL and is a breeder then Zeus needs to get out of there and into a rescue where he can be properly cared for and rehomed.
 

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Please, folks, let's put our energy into figuring out the best situation for this dog. This is a gsd board--we're presumably here because we love the breed. I personally am interested in what's best for Zeus, not the OP. Sorry but I think it's very important that the best interests of the dog (who cannot hire a lawyer or even an advocate) be front and center.

If the person who has Zeus now has really tried to rehome him through CL and is a breeder then Zeus needs to get out of there and into a rescue where he can be properly cared for and rehomed.
Yes!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Okay, I'm going to try to spell this out. I'm already having panic attacks while I'm sitting here at work. I understand, I SHOULD have taken him to get checked for a health cert. I can't express how sorry I am. But again, I didn't KNOW whether he was HW positive or NOT. I assumed because he had valid vet visits, pills, etc, that he was fine. Yes, getting him to a good place is important, but so is me not going ballistic because SHE wanted to sell him and realized that she couldn't! It was also more important that I DIDN'T HAVE DEAD CATS too!

IF I HAD THE MONEY RIGHT NOW, I WOULD GIVE IT TO HER, TAKE HIM BACK..AND SEND HIM TO A BETTER PLACE. But the fact is, I'm barely able to afford gas right now, I can't afford to give her the money back!

No, it's not a "sympathy ploy" for me. I had no idea she was just going to breed him or get rid of him until I saw her place up ads. But no matter how hard you try, sometimes even people with great intentions can turn out bad. It seems like there are certain people on this forum that do nothing but bash and badger people here. I made the mistake of selling him to her, yes. I'm SORRY. You can think what you want of me, you can call me names, you can bash me all you want..but I was only rehoming him because it was bad with my cats being attacked all the time.

She did not show me any papers to prove what she is stating to be true, I just got into work this morning and got that e-mail. And she also did not say she WAS treating him! She JUST stated that he tested positive and that it would cost that much to treat him.

I've been trying to do as much research as I could while here at work..and I realized this: I got him in JUNE..because I posted on HERE when I had gotten him (June 10th), and she STATED to me that she was taking him to the VET the DAY she picked him up! A few weeks after she had taken him, I sent her an e-mail and asked how he was doing. She said he was just fine and was doing great with her other GSD, Kaluha (sp?). So, NOW she is stating that he has HWs??? How is that MY fault NOW? It's been so long, he could have gotten them while with her! So, whether he had them with me OR her, he WAS on preventatives when I had gotten him, and she should have gotten more pills when she got him (which she stated she would at the vet that day)..and he would have been fine. That makes me think she didn't continue his pills, otherwise, he would have been fine!

"It is your responsibilty to ensure that the animal is healthy once it's in your hands, or disclose fully that you haven't done XYZ medical tests for XYZ reason. At that point, it would be on them to ensure the dog is healthy. You can not tell someone a dog doesn't have "x" condition, and require they double check everything."

You are absolutely right, and I feel bad that I didn't, but again..she bought him KNOWING that. I TOLD her that I only had him for a few weeks. Again, I feel VERY bad that I didn't at least take him in for an initial visit, I was just freaking out and trying to rehome him because he was attacking my cats, even when I had pet gates up.

I didn't come here to get bashed continueously, I came here for help and advice, and if that's all you're going to do, then I'll find a different means to deal with this. If I didn't care about him, I wouldn't have come HERE for help!

Thanks ANYWAY. :(
 

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I rehomed him for a small fee to a lady that really wanted him.
No offense, but $300 is not "a small fee". For $300, you can get a dog from a rescue that has been spayed, is up-to-date on all its shots, and has been matched to your level of experience with dogs.

I then gave Dr. Gideon the file you had given me so that she could exam his previous vet records. It was then noted that Zeus did not have a valid Florida Health Certificate at the time of purchase and that he had not had the required heart worm test that would have been necessary to receive the Health Certificate in the first place. Below you will find information that was found stating that animals sold need to have a Florida Health Certificate or the seller is in violation of the law.
I am confused about the Veterinary Certificate requirement. Are you and the buyer in different states? Are you considered a "pet dealer" under Florida Law?

Looking up Florida's Laws, it appears that the Veterinary Certificate requirement pertains to either dogs transported to the state for sale or to another state, and to dogs sold within the state if they are sold by a pet dealer. Florida defines a pet dealer as anyone who sells more than 2 litters or 20 dogs in a given year. Do you sell more than 20 dogs in a year? If not, I don't believe you qualify as a "pet dealer" and I am pretty sure a private sale between two individuals in the same state does not require a veterinary certificate.

I could be wrong, of course, but there's more available on Florida's animal laws that's easily accessible online than what she linked you to in her email.

If the person who has Zeus now has really tried to rehome him through CL and is a breeder then Zeus needs to get out of there and into a rescue where he can be properly cared for and rehomed.
Seconded!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
No offense, but $300 is not "a small fee". For $300, you can get a dog from a rescue that has been spayed, is up-to-date on all its shots, and has been matched to your level of experience with dogs.

I am confused about the Veterinary Certificate requirement. Are you and the buyer in different states? Are you considered a "pet dealer" under Florida Law?

Looking up Florida's Laws, it appears that the Veterinary Certificate requirement pertains to either dogs transported to the state for sale or to another state, and to dogs sold within the state if they are sold by a pet dealer. Florida defines a pet dealer as anyone who sells more than 2 litters or 20 dogs in a given year. Do you sell more than 20 dogs in a year? If not, I don't believe you qualify as a "pet dealer" and I am pretty sure a private sale between two individuals in the same state does not require a veterinary certificate.

I could be wrong, of course, but there's more available on Florida's animal laws that's easily accessible online than what she linked you to in her email.

Seconded!
Yes, it wasn't really a SMALL fee. But, for 1..the places I was looking at before I found him were rescues. However, most people wanted $3-400 for an adoption fee!! Also, he wasn't fixed..and if someone wasn't willing to pay a descent price for him, then more than likely they're the type of people that just get a cheap dog and breed it to death, you know what I mean? I just wanted to make sure he was in a descent home, otherwise I would have said $100 or something.

And, now that I've read up on the legal stuff, you're right. Those laws do only apply for breeders and out of state sales. I'm going to contact an attorney if she still insists on persuing. I did send this to her, as one last contact. I really don't mean to be cruel to her, but I'm trying to keep in tears and maintain my cool while at work..and I know my production looks bad now:

Also, I’m not sure if you actually understood what the vet certificate IS.

Looking up Florida's Laws, it appears that the Veterinary Certificate requirement pertains to either dogs transported to the state for sale or to another state, and to dogs sold within the state if they are sold by a pet dealer. Florida defines a pet dealer as anyone who sells more than 2 litters or 20 dogs in a given year. I don't believe I qualify as a "pet dealer" and I am pretty sure a private sale between two individuals in the same state does not require a veterinary certificate.

This is directly from the link you sent me. This certificate is only required if you buy from a breeder or from out of state. I’ve purchased pets over my time, and the only pets I have EVER received a vet certificate for was from the pets I bought from a breeder. I’ll be sure to ask an attorney though for legislative advice on this particular situation.

Look, if you don’t want to pay for his treatments, I know plenty of rescue groups that will take him in, or even HELP you get him treated. I’m more concerned with his health and well being, and I know that it is stressful for a dog being constantly rehomed because people don’t want to deal with possible or potential illnesses. Had you taken him into the vet that day you got him and he tested positive, then I honestly would have taken him back and treated him myself. You obviously just care about getting your money and not about seeing he is treated..and I’m sorry for him and for you.

The only reasonable thing I will do is tell you I’ll take him back and I’ll get him into a rescue group so he will be treated. I will not give you money, and I can’t give you money that I don’t have.

I’m very sorry, but there’s nothing else I can do for you.
Robin


I really do just want him in a good home..but you can't get blood from a turnip. I just can't afford to give her $300 when I barely make money now! Since this whole ordeal with rehoming him, my boyfriend and I are trying to buy our house, I don't HAVE spare money just rolling in out of nowhere, you know? :(
 

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I think Zeus got a bad deal all the way around.

If you think you need a lawyer then you need to contact one instead of posting on an internet forum asking if you need one.
 

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When I'm home during the day (rarely) I watch some of those court shows. A woman was trying to sue the previous owner of her dog because it got sick and died within a month (or less) of purchasing it. Judge Joe Brown threw it out saying, "Buyer Beware". The buyer got nothing, so I'm guessing you're buyer doesn't have a case unless you actually specified that the dog was heartworm negative.

Also, any time I've brought in a new dog to the vet it gets a heartworm test. It's $20 and very easy to do. And most vets retest yearly or biennially.
 

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I think Zeus got a bad deal all the way around.

If you think you need a lawyer then you need to contact one instead of posting on an internet forum asking if you need one.

i agree. And judging by her message, you should get one anyway because she can not only sue for the cost of the dog (if she finds a way around that florida law) but she can now sue you for stress the situation is causing her and anything else she pretty much feels like that she feels you've done to wrong her. If she suddenly has an onset of migranes, she can add that to the list with a doctor stating it was stress related and it can once again, by a lawyer arguing her side, be traced back to the situation with the dog.
 
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