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I read the previous questions about a dog entering the neighbors yard and killing a cat; my question is however in some jurisdic

Bakersfield, CA |
Filed under: Animal law

In some jurisdictions a cat is not considered property but a wild animal? In this case would the neighbor still be liable?

Attorney Answers 3


Cats are domestic animals.

While there are feral cats, a dog which entered someone's yard is clearly not under its owner's control and its owner is liable for all harm it causes. Whether the domestic animal the dog kills or injures in that yard is a cat, dog, chicken or goat is irrelevant.

The foregoing is for general information purposes and does not establish an attorney-client relationship.

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I agree with my colleague - the cat is a domestic animal and the dog's owner is liable.

If we do not have a signed fee agreement I am not your attorney and this is not legal advice.

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I am in complete agreement with my two colleagues who already answered this question: I have never heard of any jurisdiction in the United States or the world, for that matter, where domesticated felines are considered wild animals. The only thing I can possibly think that you might be referring to is that in some jurisdictions cats are allowed to roam freely and in others they must be confined the the property owner's yard or otherwise safely restrained when out and about. Also, by the way, the owner of any animal would be liable regardless of whether the harm is caused was to a domesticated or wild animal.

This post should not be construed as formal legal advice or the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.<br /> <a href="" target="_blank">Joan M. Bundy, Attorney at Law, Casa Grande, Arizona</a>

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