763melani - First of all, the title "AKC" does not imply quality. All it means is that the breeder is breeding AKC registered dogs and can fill out the necessary paperwork. That's it. You can leave out the AKC part and just say that "some breeders suck!". Then I will agree with you.
With that said, depending on the problem and the breeder, defects happen. Even the BEST breeder in the world will have an occasional defect pop up. I've even had a couple of minor ones on occasion. When you deal with Mother Nature anything is possible.
The key to purchasing a puppy is to find a breeder that you really click with (so that IF something goes wrong you know that you and the breeder are on the same page and do business the same way - it makes life easier). You also need to read through your paperwork thoroughly to insure that IF something goes wrong that you agree with the way the breeder handles things. It's hard to say after the fact that you don't agree with a breeder's practices or health guarantee when you should have read through it first.
Harassing the breeder may not get anyone anywhere. If the breeder really is a shoddy one, they have caller ID and are used to dealing with disatisfied customers. One more person harassing them doesn't matter. If they are a decent breeder, then harassing them is taking away any chance you have at dealing with the situation maturely. You draw more flies with honey.
This is an unfortunate situation - but also the reason I tell people that you shouldn't look for the perfect puppy - you should look for the perfect breeder! You find a great breeder, you've found a wonderful puppy!
I don't see how the breeders vet gave the ok to ship if the pup has a big enough open fontanel to cause serious problems. I pup like this should never have been sold and watched to see if it closes. If your vet saw the pup right after you bought it, they should have seen that too and gone over with you what can happen and you could have taken action right away with the breeder. I'm confused about the pups health. Is it just sitting at your vets office in a coma or what? I hope it's not suffering! I guess I would call the breeder and tell her it's to sick to fly it back to her ( and have your vet write a report saying that) and ask her how she wants to handle this problem. You could also call her vet ( the phone # should be on the health cert for shipping) and ask them if they remember this pup and talk to them about your problem and why they felt it was ok to issue a health cert on a pup with a large open fontanel, and the stress of shipping was not a problem. I guess it's a gray area because many times the whole will close, BUT you should have been told about it from the breeder. You shouldn't have been put in this spot , but you are now the pups owner and the pups health and not letting it suffer should be your TOP priority.
no matter what the contract says they must follow the law. Just because they write it doesnt make it legal. What I mean is in some states you have 14 days to have a vet check and return a pup if it is sick. So if the "breeder says you have 48 hours.... thats not the law. They must follow the law. just because they wrote it doesnt make it legal. If you know what I mean. I dont know all the details of your case but I would start by sending cert. letters( because she not answering the phone) Then I would contact the BBB and let them know whats going on. ( advise her you will be doing this by letter or email) get all your papers emails and reciepts in order and if you have to file in civil court. you can do this on your own you dont need a lawyer. If its too far away for you to do this exposing her ( to the BBB) as a bad breeder may be enough to get your money back. Good breeders would never want that.
Oh get more from the vet on the pups condition send that to her too. Also find out what the laws are in her state on the sale of animals. I know Florida has some pretty tough laws on animals and live stock.
also check to see if she's done this before and if anyone else is sueing her. ( check BBB)
Be sure to read your cotract to see what has been written to cover you in this case. ( of a sick dog.)
I did say before that she died but I was undering the impression from the vet that, that would be the outcome which is why I didn't keep her. At least there she is with constant care, supervision and the right medication so she won't be in any pain. I am only 16. She seemed like a perfectly fine person. What is the BBB?
People always think you need lawyers to do anything. You don't. If you are willing to travel to the city she lives in you can take out a warrant on her (costs around $75-$100) and sue her.
After she is served a court date willl be set and you will both appear in court and plead your case. If you win, she has to pay the warrant costs and your travel costs along with whatever amount you are suing her for. She will have 10 days to pay you in full. If she doesn't pay you in 10 days you can garnishee her wages or place a lein on any property she has such as a car, home, boat, etc. You can sieze items such as cars and boats (and have them brought to your home) as long as the value of those items does not exceed the amount she owes you. Once you seixe the items, she has an alotted time to pay you and reclaim her property or you can sell it and recoup your money. If you place a lein on her house then if it is ever sold your money will be paid to you before she gets hers. If you don't want to wait then you can file for foreclosure on the house which will require her to pay you or her house will be put up for public auction.
You can do this if someone owes you $50 or $50,000 it doesn't matter. You DO NOT need a lawyer to do this. I have rental homes and have dealt with this for years. I have won every case I have ever taken to court and have never used a lawyer/attorney. You just have to be prepared and have your documents with you.
If you do not have a written and signed contract with her which states that she is liable, then you are pretty much SOL. Also, being that you are 16, you will need a parent to perform the legal proceedings. The key is that you must PROVE she was negligent.
bellaNchico exactly, just because someone writes out a contract doesn't make it legal, I have worked for a lawyer many years and see many cases like this. If this person is a minor then a contract would be void, a minor is not allowed to go into a contract without a parents consent. A lawyer is unnecessary if they have all their paperwork together. All you have to do is go to small claims court and file.
Most of the time you can not get back your travel expenses because you decided to take the person to court, you usually only get back the price of the puppy and any vet expenses you paid due to the illness. Like I said before though in order to get the moneys back you will need to return the puppy. You stated (if I’m not wrong) that the vet now has the puppy so that may be a whole different story. You need to contact a courthouse in the state the puppy was purchased and find out their laws regarding the sale of animals. I would advise you to do the stuff yourself, you do not need to pay lawyers expenses on a case as cut and dry as this. If what you say is true and you can get your vet to give you a notarized letter stating what is wrong with the puppy and not something that was caused in your care then the judge more than likely will return to you the price of the puppy and any vet expenses. If you are a minor however your parents can file and like I said before the contract is void. Make sure everything you do is sent to her by certified letter and keep a copy of the letter in your records.
The BBB is the Better Business Burrow, try them first, I believe they have mediation for cases as these. If they can not straighten things out then you and your parents can take it from there.
***Edited By: hearay1010 on 7/11/2005 1:29:17 AM*** Reason: add