While standing in line in a Petco, a pit bull bit my service dog on the mouth causing a permanent 1" scar. My dog approached the vicious dog in the line, but didn't instigate anything other than trying to be friendly by approaching him. The store employees didn't do anything about it, but rather their dog trainer said it was my fault for letting my dog approach the other dog (impossible to avoid in line). I yelled for the immediate removal of the pit bull and nobody did anything whatsoever.
I do not have the pit bull's owner info, but the store does. They are unwilling to provide me the info. The store offered me a $50 shopping card, but I feel that is too little. What should I do if I feel I'm being under compensated?
You should have called the cops immediately when it happened. They would have detained this person and gotten their info for the police report. At this point, you can call the non-emergency number of the police department and see what they can do. You are entitled to sue this other dog owner for the damages to your dog and vet bills. If the cops can not help, then see about contacting Petco's corporate office. Since it's a service animal, see if a disability rights group will help put pressure on Petco. If that does not work, your only option is to hire a lawyer--but you'll have to see if the dollar amount is worth it.
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Animal Law Attorney
You should contact your local police department and make sure you have all documentation with you, including the fact that it is a service dog and any vet bills. You can file in small claims court for your expenses, suing Petco and the unknown party. You can request that the judge issue a subpoena to Petco to get the person's information. You should also consult a service dog/animal law expert to ascertain the true damages. One concern I have is that service dogs are generally trained NOT to approach other people or animals while working.
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