What's A Family Pet Worth? Ga. Supreme Court Will Decide

Jan 19, 2016

What's the value of a family pet? 

That question is at the center of a case that will be argued before the Georgia Supreme Court Tuesday.

A Fulton County couple claims the kennel Barking Hound Village gave their dog medication that resulted in its death.

They want to be paid back for veterinary costs as well as emotional damages and sued the company for $67,000.

Barking Hound Village is appealing the case. It argues it should be responsible only for the market-value of the pet, which is "nominal," according to the kennel, since it was a mixed breed.

WABE legal analyst Page Pate says the case reveals an area of Georgia law that needs updating.

“When you're dealing with something like a pet," Pate said, "even though Georgia law considers the pet to be your personal property, we all know that we value our pets more than what they would be worth if we tried to sell them.”

Pate said he expects the issue will come up more often as people increasingly opt for pet day care and boarding services.