Vermont Supreme Court to Decide What Man’s Best Friend is Worth
The Scheeles argue that family pets should not be thought of as basic property.
Denis and Sarah Scheele, who love their six adopted special-needs dogs so much that they brush their teeth and wrap them in raincoats when it’s drizzling, are asking Vermont’s Supreme Court to draw up a new legal doctrine allowing a canine’s owners to sue for loss of companionship and emotional stress.
In July of 2003 the Scheeles were visiting relatives when their mixed-breed dog Shadow wandered into a neighbor’s yard and was fatally shot.
Lewis Dustin, the neighbor, says he only intended to scare the dog. Unfortunately the strategy was flawed, as the shot he fired pierced Shadow’s chest and severed an aorta.
“It’s so important for people to really recognize the relationship between the families and their companion animals,” Sarah Scheele said during Thursday’s hearing.
The court is likely to make a ruling sometime before spring. (Huffington Post)