Monroe County Dog Ownership Lawsuit Concluded

Posted on: June 29th, 2012       Attorney Thomas Newell

In an October 2010 legal opinion, a Monroe County Court of Common Pleas Judge has ruled that a dog should remain with its primary caretaker and not be returned to its owner.  In 2004, Alexa Dodgson was given a dog as a gift.  Over the next few years the woman occasionally lived with Kevin Walsh.  However, even when she resided elsewhere, the dog remained at the Walsh residence.

Monroe County trial testimony indicated that Dodgson took possession of the dog in early 2008 but returned it to Walsh around 30 days later.  Walsh testified that he informed Dodgson that he would only take the dog back if it was to remain with him permanently.  Dodgson later sued to have the dog returned to her.  Judge Zulick noted that Walsh was the exclusive custodian of the dog since February of 2008, that he was the one who took the dog to the vet and had also installed a dog run at his home.  Walsh testified that he had spent $4,000.00 on the dog since 2004.  Dodgson v Walsh, Court of Common Pleas of Monroe County PA (Oct. 2010 J. Zulick)