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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I posted a thread under puppy corner about Copper and her issues when we went to spay her. Had a lengthy conversation with the vet today and we are going to get the spay done once we have all the precautions in place. We also plan on getting the VetGen test done to show if she is Vwd or not. Now here is my question...someone here at work thought that they had read somewhere that there are laws in place to protect buyers for the first year if it can be proven that the dog has a hereditary condition. I searched the internet and this is what I came up with. Could someone please decipher it and tell me what you get out of reading it. You would think being I am in law enforcement that I could figure it out on my own, but I just keep telling myself that it is not a criminal statute and therefore I can not make heads nor tails out of it.
Here it is:

Subd. 6. Rights of the purchaser. If, within ten days after receipt of the animal by the purchaser, a veterinarian states, in writing, that the animal has a health problem which existed in the animal at the time of delivery, or if within one year after receipt of the animal by the purchaser, a veterinarian states, in writing, that the animal has died or is ill due to a hereditary or congenital defect, or is not of the breed type represented, the animal shall be considered to have been unfit for sale at the time of sale.

In the event an animal dies due to a health problem which existed in the animal at the time of delivery to the purchaser, the pet dealer shall provide the purchaser with one of the following remedies selected by the purchaser: receive an animal, of equal value, if available, and reimbursement for reasonable veterinary fees, such reimbursements not to exceed the original purchase price of the animal; or receive a refund of the full purchase price.

In the event of a health problem, which existed at the time of delivery to the purchaser, the pet dealer shall provide the purchaser with one of the following remedies selected by the purchaser: return the animal to the pet dealer for a refund of the full purchase price; exchange the animal for an animal of the purchaser's choice of equivalent value, providing a replacement is available; or retain the animal, and receive reimbursement for reasonable veterinary fees, such reimbursements not to exceed the original purchase price of the animal.

The price of veterinary service shall be deemed reasonable if the service is appropriate for the diagnosis and treatment of the health problem and the price of the service is comparable to that of similar service rendered by other veterinarians in proximity to the treating veterinarian.
 

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Wegs, this is fairly common wording in the statutes of many states. Some states call it the "Pet Lemon Law". But since you did not cite the source, it is unclear whether it would even apply to you or not. You need to pull and read the ENTIRE relevant state statute where you live and also that of the state where you purchased Copper from (if it's different). That being said, here are my comments:

1. First, this text refers to a "pet dealer". That requires definition found in your state statutes. For instance, Fla. Stat. 828.29 defines "pet dealer" as: "...any person, firm, partnership, corporation, or other association which, in the ordinary course of business, engages in the sale of more than two litters, or 20 dogs or cats, per year, whichever is greater, to the public.";
2. Also, did you possibly sign a waiver for any congenital defect? Are you sure?;
3. This statute typically also states that a "pet dealer" must provide the buyer with a veterinarian's certificate of health at the time of purchase. Did you get one certifying Copper's health? I mention this because of the part where it says, "In the event of a health problem, which existed at the time of delivery to the purchaser...". In other words, are you able to prove the problem didn't develop after purchase?

Bottom line, I doubt Copper is covered under the above text for a number of reasons, even if it is the law in your state. JMHO, not knowing the specifics of your purchase.
 

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If you are trying to figure out if you can claim damages under one of the puppy "lemon" laws (and they vary from state to state) I'd have to guess that it would not apply if you're going to claim damages from the puppy's vWD status.

vWD, as was pointed out a number of times in response to your original query in the puppy section is generally not even detrimental to MOST Dobes--what is detrimental is the incredible number of vets who really have not done their homework with respect to vWD in the Doberman and what "affected" realistically means.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Sooz...thanks for your answers! My head is just spinning with all this stuff. The wording came right out of the MN state statute.
This is our definition of "pet dealer":
(b) "Pet dealer" means any person, firm, partnership, corporation, or association, including
breeders, that is required to collect sales tax for the sale of animals to the public. Pet dealer
does not include humane societies, nonprofit organizations performing the functions of humane
societies, or animal control agencies.
(c) "Breeder" means any person, firm, partnership, corporation, or association that breeds
animals for direct or indirect sale to the public.

We did not sign a waiver when she was purchased. We have gone back and re-read everything. As for the health certificate, we had to have her checked by our vet within 48 hours of purchase..she checked out perfect. It was only a look over and no invasive testing was done. Correct me if I am wrong, but from my understanding of Vwd it is hereditary and not something that just develops. At this point we are just gathering information.
 

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Yes Wegs, vWD is hereditary. But the Minnesota statute clearly says, "...if within one year...the animal...is ILL DUE TO a hereditary or congenital defect." Strictly speaking, Copper is not ill, is she? She may have a clotting condition that makes an elective surgery (spay) less safe than a dog without the condition, but is a disorder the same as an illness? Hmmmm...arguable.

Don't take me wrong here...if Copper does have a serious clotting disorder, (I'm assuming) that you'd like her breeder to pay the vet expenses. I understand, as they could be considerable. I also understand that at this point you have to consider all your options...everything...and by statute you have to do it pretty quickly. Hope things turn out for the best for you and Copper. And try not to worry yourself to death. (I know, I know, easier said than done.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you Sooz...that is exactly what I am doing..worrying myself sick about something that is probably not that big of a deal! The more and more that I think of it, I could really care less if the breeder pays her vet expenses. Travis and I had a really long talk about things last night, and no matter what she has, she is ours, we love her to death and she is not going anywhere! We have learned a lesson and it will not happen again! Thanks to everyone that has listened to me spew!
 
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