Horses and the Law

March 2011 - Posts

Guardianship Revisited

The Guardian Movement had a birthday not too long ago, but hardly anyone noticed. The brainchild of Dr. Elliot Katz, founder and president of the animal welfare organization In Defense of Animals, the Guardian Movement was inaugurated with a laudable goal, advancing animal welfare by changing the public perception of the relationship between animals and their owners. The idea involved a fundamental... Read More

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The Dating Game

Some Internet romances work out, some do not. Barbara and William met through an online dating service in January 2005. Their profiles included photographs of them riding horses and after chatting by e-mail and telephone, the two decided to meet in person. They discussed their respective riding expertise on the first date: Barbara said that she had ridden and owned horses in the past but that she had... Read More

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Is Research Legal?

Near the end of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan , Spock sacrifices himself to save the USS Enterprise and the ship’s crew. The decision is logical, Spock explains, because: Spock: the needs of the many outweigh . . . Kirk: the needs of the few . . . Spock: or the one. A similar balancing act often is a justification for using animals as research subjects and the resulting advances in human and veterinary... Read More

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Are Horses Attractive Nuisances?

A reader commenting on last week’s blog about giving horses the benefit of the "one free bite" rule mentioned attractive nuisance laws as the other side of the coin, a way to impose liability for injuries to careless children. "Attractive nuisance" sounds like a contradiction in terms. How can something that’s attractive, like a painting or a sunset also be a nuisance? And what does it have to do with... Read More

One Free Bite

The so-called "one bite rule" has been around for centuries. The rule was a well-established tenet of English common law as far back as the 1600s and the principle migrated to the United States with English law after the Revolutionary War. Typically applied to encounters between humans and dogs, the rule holds the owner blameless for injuries inflicted by an animal if the owner had no prior knowledge... Read More

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About This Blog

Equine lawyers don’t sue horses—but what, exactly, do they do? And why does it matter? Horses and the Law brings you an in-depth look at the important legal issues affecting horse owners and exhibitors today, including liability, sales and bloodstock agents, contracts and other business concerns, taxes, the animal rights vs. animal welfare debate, and legislation. If you agree with something, or even if you don’t, feel free to comment. Just keep it tasteful. And remember that Horses and the Law does not—and cannot—address your specific legal problems, and is not a source of legal advice. For that, you should contact your own attorney.