Defense of a "third party" or "property"?

Discussion in 'The Constitutional & RKBA Forum' started by jce07a, Apr 5, 2012.

  1. jce07a

    jce07a New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2012
    Messages:
    216
    Location:
    Abilene, Texas
    just over a year ago i had my dog at the dog park (for those who are unfamiliar, its a fenced in area designed for people to bring their dogs to play and exercise off leash) and he isnt a small dog (a great dane mix who couldnt hurt a fly if he wanted to...ive seen him try) but he was attacked outright by another dog (a pitbull mastiff mix). he was so shocked during the attack that he didnt even think to defend himself while this other dog had him by the neck. i was able to run over and myself and 3 other people ended up pulling the other dog off mine. in the process of getting the dog off, i got bit through my finger. my question is, legally, instead of trying to pry the dog off mine could i have just drawn my pistol and shot it? in my opinion, i am defending a third party. and also dogs are typically considered "property" could i have not shot the attacking dog in defense of my property? i typically have a knife in my pocket for various tasks around work also, would i have been in the right to use that to defend my dog? and i now carry a 7.8million volt stun gun whenever i go to the park, would this be a good defense?

    i know its a lot of questions but it was kind of a complicated situation and i continue to go to the park with my dog so i am looking for justification if that sort of situation ever arises again. if it makes any difference, my dog is also certified with the AKC as a canine good citizen and certified with the Delta Society as an approved therapy dog
  2. Old Grump

    Old Grump New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2010
    Messages:
    2,320
    Location:
    Little hut in the woods near Blue River Wisconsin
    Shoot the sumbitch then cut it's head off and hand it to the owner in a gunny sack. If it doesn't socialize with other dogs it should never be off leash.
  3. ryan42

    ryan42 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2012
    Messages:
    1,665
    Location:
    marion indiana
    I do not know about using a knife or a gun that would be deadly force but im pretty sure you could use non lethat force to get him off.There are some law enforcement officers on here that would be better to answer,they will probably be on later.
  4. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2007
    Messages:
    10,520
    Location:
    NW Florida
    I'm afraid that neither Old Grump, in Wisconsin, ryan in Indiana or me in Florida could offer you any real advice, since you are in Texas and the laws are different.

    I do know that, here, if I was walking my dog on a leash and she was attacked I would be justified in shooting the attacking dog. I don't know about running lose in a dog park though. That would be one to ask a lawyer about.

    Sticking your hand into a dog fight, whether you have a knife in it or a stun gun, is, in my opinion, asking to get chewed on. A heavy boot in the ribs will do a better job, but a pistol works better.
  5. RunningOnMT

    RunningOnMT New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2008
    Messages:
    4,720
    Location:
    Akron, Ohio
    Well, here in Ohio you can't shoot a "person" to defend your property, but I really don't know about shooting one dog to defend another. Now if you can make a reasonable case that you personally felt threatened, I'd be willing to bet you could shoot that dog. It's a good question but as Alpo said you can't go by the laws in other states.

    Your best bet would be to contact a certified NRA firearms instructor in your state. I say that because it has been my experience it can be a crapshoot if you ask a cop. A lot of times they really don't know so they'll wing it or tell you what they'd like the law to be, not what it is.
  6. yetiman

    yetiman New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2011
    Messages:
    500
    Location:
    Martin, Tn
    By the time you got PETA off your butt you would be better off not shooting a gun.....this just happened a few miles from where I live. A man was walking his Poodle on a leash and a Pit Bull attacked his dog. From what the news projected the Pit Bull owner is going to be liable and they are talking about banning the breed.
  7. carver

    carver Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2008
    Messages:
    15,026
    Location:
    DAV, Deep in the Pineywoods of East Texas, just we
    Alpo nailed it! If you don't already have an attorney, then you are behind in the SD game, so to speak. If you are going to carry a gun for SD get an attorney. He will be your advisor in all cases of the law, and the use of deadly force at any time.
  8. 76Highboy

    76Highboy Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2012
    Messages:
    8,540
    Ditto. Big boots and a gun.
  9. Old Grump

    Old Grump New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2010
    Messages:
    2,320
    Location:
    Little hut in the woods near Blue River Wisconsin
    Sorry folks but I don't care if I am in the middle of Boston Square, in front of Monterey's Fish Market in San Francisco or in city hall in New York City, a large dog attacks me or mine it is going to get stopped. I been on the losing side a few times when I was younger. Now I put the dog down any way I can and so far the only negative reaction has been the neighbor who owned the black lab moved away because the police wouldn't do anything about all the holes in his dog. I'm to old for holes, I don't heal as fast as I used to and I done lost my patience and sense of humor.
  10. CampingJosh

    CampingJosh Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    Messages:
    5,306
    Location:
    Indiana
    Is the "breed" here terrible dog owners? Because I've never had a problem with any dog of any breed, but I've had problems with the owners of many breeds.

    Any domesticated breed is controllable by an owner who will do it. The owner should definitely be liable when they do not do so.
  11. jbrescue

    jbrescue New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2012
    Messages:
    296
    Location:
    N. Ridgeville, Ohio
    Unfortuantely I think you are accepting some responsibility and liability in the dog park. I am pretty sure that if you shot or stabbed the dog that would be a problem. The stun gun would work and a boot would be better. The worst that would happen is the owner would get pissed, the cops get called and both of you get banned from the dog park. The worst part is that so many people think that they have a great dog. My dog was a great dog too. There is no way I would have taken her to a dog park. She would have tried to "play" with a smaller dog and probably killed it.
  12. yetiman

    yetiman New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2011
    Messages:
    500
    Location:
    Martin, Tn
    I agree completely, you have got to be a responsible owner! As a bicycle enthusiast I encounter hundreds of dogs even though the entire state has a leash law. Almost came to blows with a guy over a lab....I just wanted to know if he had his rabies vaccination and the guy went ballistic until I showed him the bite. :D
  13. redwing carson

    redwing carson Former Guest

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2010
    Messages:
    734
    Location:
    western wyoming
    I have seen a dog park in Dallas, Txs. It would be dangerous to fire a weapon there. Adults, children and pets every where. I would fear a stray bullet hiting someone. I expect in Texas you would be charged for discharging a weapon in the city. I would carry a can of bear spray. That will knock a dog on his butt.:eek:
  14. whirley

    whirley New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Messages:
    542
    I saw something like this happen. The one dog owner in the process of breaking up the fight, "accidently" fell on his knees on the attacking dog. "Accidently" crushed the attacking dogs ribs, and killed it "accidently. "Accidents do happen." The man was young and agile, so was able to move around. No grounds for a law suit and a vicious dog eliminated. I'm too old, so always keep my dog leashed and carry a good stout stick. Actually it's an old club the railroad brakemen used to manually lock the brakes on the freight cars years ago. About the diameter of a billy club, but longer. When I want my dog worked, I take her to a nearby Game Lands off season, and let her work the brush. A good training session for both of us.
  15. jce07a

    jce07a New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2012
    Messages:
    216
    Location:
    Abilene, Texas
    reaching in to stop the fight was my last ditch effort. i kicked the hell out of the thing to try to stop it. i grabbed it by the nuts and yanked. punched it in the sides and throat. all to no avail. the owner said to me afterwards "if that ever happens again, don't try to break em up, just let them settle their differences." at the time he said this to me, he was lucky i didnt "settle my differences" with him and his dog. i have nothing against the breed. pits are awesome dogs, two of my really good friends have pits that are both some of the best behaved dogs ive seen. in the months following the event i contacted the owner several times in order to have him pay back my medical bills and my dogs vet bills which he agreed verbally to do and was liable to do anyways according to the city ordinance regarding the park. he neglected to reply to my calls and voicemails so i took the matter to small claims court and won my case. however, i am still waiting for his payment.
  16. armoredman

    armoredman New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2011
    Messages:
    1,440
    Location:
    Proud to be in Arizona
    Can you attach any real property? Lien on his car?
    Pepper spray works wonders.
  17. jce07a

    jce07a New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2012
    Messages:
    216
    Location:
    Abilene, Texas
    im not 100% sure. apparently all i can do is file a "failure to pay" against him that last for 10 years and basically prevents him from owning property within the county until he pays me what he owes me.
  18. yellerdawg

    yellerdawg Former Guest

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2009
    Messages:
    244

    Yes, a lot of questions.

    I am not a lawyer or magistrate or even a reserve LEO any longer.
    I am a DPS trained CHL instructor.

    The training you received per your CHL and the Texas penal codes varies
    by instructor, but all require students to follow up and stay as up to date as
    they can on their own.

    The park...There are public parks where CHL is not allowed, I'm sure you
    checked on that. There are no such parks without "posted" rules and
    responsibilities and reliefs etc...

    Yes, a legal action against the other owner is your route. In future, be sure
    and obtain any witness info and contacts. Know all rules and such when
    you are off your own property.

    The dog is your property, but as with any penal code provisions as they
    are stated, any action per your part must be viewed as "reasonable" by
    final peer review and the courts. The risks of firing a weapon within
    city limits for the reason(s) you state are too great for all aspects as
    I see you report.

    The State of Texas has, and does allow a great deal of leeway as to
    property owners defending ones property, and even still has special
    provisions for protecting such "when dark".

    The use of your CHL to "stop the threat" against your dog, in an
    enclosed area it was put into by you, to mix with other unleashed or controlled dogs, is something I would not advise. I also would not
    consider a dog, no matter how much valued or loved, as a "third person"
    with respect to self defense laws. However, it is as lawful to defend a
    third person as one's self, if and when that third person is under the
    same threat requirements as you would be etc...but it still will fall into
    the "as deemed reasonable" when you are judged.

    You will need to ask an attorney as to your best legal recourse to recover
    any possible damages from such an incident, civilly. I told you I was not
    an attorney, but I strongly feel after a week of teaching by the DPS, and
    years of other experience that although protecting one's property, especially if on one's property to start with, is very liberally offered by the State and is well written within the penal code(s) and has little to do with CHL, with exceptions of stopping "aggravated" sexual/criminal/robbery assault etc...your use of your CHL to stop such a dog situation would seem ill advised, as I read it.

    Had the other dog, God forbid, grabbed a child or woman and was injuring
    and a threat to them..then possibly you could have put yourself between
    this and removed the threat if you "reasonably" decided you could...

    Anyway...am sorry you were injured or your good dog...but without trying
    to muddy anything further in my attempts, wanted you to know it "appears" to me that you did right by not using your weapon.

    At claims court , you might have respectfully petitioned the court to have
    party furnish "proof" that his home owners (if he had any) insurance would
    not have covered such damages...as the dog was his property...many
    would have covered it....etc....

    In Dec around 79 when it was pretty cold here...a pit grabbed a liitle
    girl on our street in Hurst, TX. A neighbor and I ran to the ruckuss and
    he grabbed the girl and I grabbed the dog, which locked onto my right
    arm pretty good. I walked to the nearest tree with the dog and took him
    out using the tree. I dont advise such for all, but, all are not 6'3' and 300 lbs and
    had the temper or training I once had.

    regards, and remember to use your weapon only to "stop" the threat
    as needed.

    yellerdawg
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2012
  19. time2shoot

    time2shoot Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2012
    Messages:
    3,001
    Location:
    Brandon SD
    Since you have his address and know where he lives watch what he drives get make model and plate number. Go back-to-back court house to the clerks office and get an execution order list his car or truck in it pay the fee to the sheriff and they will go get it and auction it off.


    And use your boot in the dogs ribs.
  20. Hammerslagger

    Hammerslagger New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Messages:
    1,097
    Well said yellerdawg.
Similar Threads
Forum Title Date
The Constitutional & RKBA Forum Store Clerk Shoots Black in Self Defense ... Nov 30, 2012
The Constitutional & RKBA Forum Military defense budget Oct 22, 2012
The Constitutional & RKBA Forum Self defense for truckers Sep 26, 2012
The Constitutional & RKBA Forum Dems introduce legislation to do away with self defense May 10, 2012
The Constitutional & RKBA Forum Gov Goofy Vetoes "Castle Doctrine Self Defense Bill Bill. Mar 5, 2012