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Thread: Shooting attacking animals

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    Regular Member rapgood's Avatar
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    Shooting attacking animals

    Someone posted a question last week (or so) about the lawfulness of shooting an attacking dog (I believe, in the context of being in a place where OC is restricted). Search capabilities on this site leave much to be desired, so I thought I'd just post the info as a new thread.

    Washington state law on shooting attacking dogs is very straight-forward and has been long-established, both by statute and by caselaw. This is true, regardless of whether there are "restrictions" on open carrying or shooting in the area (I am not responding to any question that my have arisen regarding whether restricting OC is proper in this context. I am replying only to the question of whether shooting an attacking dog is permitted in Washington).

    See, generally, RCW 16.08 - Dogs

    It shall be lawful for any person who shall see any dog or dogs chasing, biting, injuring or killing any sheep, swine or other domestic animal, including poultry, belonging to such person, on any real property owned or leased by, or under the control of, such person, or on any public highway, to kill such dog or dogs, and it shall be the duty of the owner or keeper of any dog or dogs so found chasing, biting or injuring any domestic animal, including poultry, upon being notified of that fact by the owner of such domestic animals or poultry, to thereafter keep such dog or dogs in leash or confined upon the premises of the owner or keeper thereof, and in case any such owner or keeper of a dog or dogs shall fail or neglect to comply with the provisions of this section, it shall be lawful for the owner of such domestic animals or poultry to kill such dog or dogs found running at large. RCW 16.08.020.

    One may kill a vicious animal in the necessary defense of himself or the members of his household, or under circumstances which indicate danger that property will be injured or destroyed unless the aggressor is killed, but it seems that such killing is justified only when the animal is actually doing injury. . . . Every person has a natural right to defend and protect his animate property--as cattle, stock and fowls -- from injury or destruction by dogs, and in pursuance of that object may kill dogs engaged in doing injury to such animals owned by him; but there must exist an apparent necessity for such a course, and the destruction of the dog must be reasonably necessary under the circumstances. . . . The right to kill dogs, in order to protect inanimate property, is based upon the same considerations. Drolet v. Armstrong, 141 Wash. 654, 657 (Wash. 1927).

    State v. Burk, 114 Wash. 370, 195 Pac. 16 (1921). In Burk, the Court held that one who kills elk in defense of his or her property is not guilty of violating the law if such killing was reasonably necessary for the defense of his or her property.
    Rev. Robert Apgood, Esq.

    A right cannot be lost by exercising it. McDonald v. Chicago, 561 U.S. 3025, 130 S. Ct. 3020, 3021, 177 L. Ed. 2d 894 (2010) (citing Near v. Minn., 283 U.S. 697 (1931)).

    Although IAAL, anything I say here is not legal advice. No conversations we may have privately or otherwise in this forum constitute the formation of an attorney-client relationship, and are not intended to do so.

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    Based on Burk and assuming flowers and shrubbery are property killing of deer in the process of destroying flowers and shrubbery would be lawful or at least a lawful defense for killing said deer.

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    If a toll collection crossbar is descending onto a Continental or TownCar, surely the driver can shoot. It would be a clear case of preventing a booth from hurting a Lincoln.
    Last edited by Citizen; 10-15-2012 at 03:09 PM.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rapgood View Post
    SNIP It shall be lawful for any person who shall see any dog or dogs chasing, biting, injuring or killing any sheep, swine or other domestic animal...
    I'd better get back on topic.

    So, when a Greyhound is about to run over my Rabbit, I can shoot?



    (Does this count as a triple? Property defense, transportation, dog racing.)
    Last edited by Citizen; 10-15-2012 at 04:27 PM.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Regular Member hermannr's Avatar
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    It has also been my understanding (very old mind you) that any dog chasing deer or elk (game animal) may also be legally shot if not on property owned or under control of that dogs owner...exceptions are for licensed hounds during licensed bear or Cougar chase seasons. Is that correct?

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    Regular Member Cubex DE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    If a toll collection crossbar is descending onto a Continental or TownCar, surely the driver can shoot. It would be a clear case of preventing a booth from hurting a Lincoln.
    *snicker*
    Jesus thought it was more important to be armed than well dressed:

    Then said He unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his
    scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.~Luke 22:36

    (Emphasis mine.)

    (Note that the word "garment" here refers to an outer cloak, equivalent to today's sport coats or
    suit jackets in that they both provided warmth and conveyed a certain level of sophistication.)

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    Regular Member rapgood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hermannr View Post
    It has also been my understanding (very old mind you) that any dog chasing deer or elk (game animal) may also be legally shot if not on property owned or under control of that dogs owner...exceptions are for licensed hounds during licensed bear or Cougar chase seasons. Is that correct?
    Well... it depends...

    The right to exclude trespassing hunters from ones property does not create a corresponding right to kill hunting dogs momentarily crossing his property. See Op. Att'y Gen. (May 11, 1928) 711-12; Zanotti v. Bolles, 80 Vt. 345, 67 A. 818 (1907). Moreover, although the right to game on ones property is superior to that of trespassers, the State's property right to regulate wildlife is superior to the property owner's "Wildlife is the property of the state." RCW 77.12.010. "Game is not a property right appurtenant to land. Game belongs to the State." State v. Quigley, 52 Wn.2d 234, 236, 324 P.2d 827 (1958). As such, one cannot successfully maintain that he killed hunting dogs in defense of wildlife or of his property. State v. Long, 98 Wn. App. 669, 676 (2000).

    If the shooter shoots a dog chasing a deer (or any undomesticated creature that is regulated by the state or governmental agency) where they are not on his property, he likely will not be protected by the law, and will be liable to the dog owner for the value of the dog.

    But, such protracted discussions on this topic are better suited to another forum.
    Last edited by rapgood; 10-15-2012 at 04:02 PM.
    Rev. Robert Apgood, Esq.

    A right cannot be lost by exercising it. McDonald v. Chicago, 561 U.S. 3025, 130 S. Ct. 3020, 3021, 177 L. Ed. 2d 894 (2010) (citing Near v. Minn., 283 U.S. 697 (1931)).

    Although IAAL, anything I say here is not legal advice. No conversations we may have privately or otherwise in this forum constitute the formation of an attorney-client relationship, and are not intended to do so.

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    Opt-Out Members BigDave's Avatar
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    If one was to be taking their pet for a walk under your control and a dog/s attacks your domestic animal then this is covered as well in RCW 16.08.020 under "other domestic animal" includes your pet dog, cat, rabbit and so on.

    RCW 16.08.020
    Dogs injuring stock may be killed.

    It shall be lawful for any person who shall see any dog or dogs chasing, biting, injuring or killing any sheep, swine or other domestic animal, including poultry, belonging to such person, on any real property owned or leased by, or under the control of, such person, or on any public highway, to kill such dog or dogs, and it shall be the duty of the owner or keeper of any dog or dogs so found chasing, biting or injuring any domestic animal, including poultry, upon being notified of that fact by the owner of such domestic animals or poultry, to thereafter keep such dog or dogs in leash or confined upon the premises of the owner or keeper thereof, and in case any such owner or keeper of a dog or dogs shall fail or neglect to comply with the provisions of this section, it shall be lawful for the owner of such domestic animals or poultry to kill such dog or dogs found running at large.
    Last edited by BigDave; 10-15-2012 at 05:52 PM.
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    Regular Member hermannr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rapgood View Post
    Well... it depends...

    The right to exclude trespassing hunters from ones property does not create a corresponding right to kill hunting dogs momentarily crossing his property. See Op. Att'y Gen. (May 11, 1928) 711-12; Zanotti v. Bolles, 80 Vt. 345, 67 A. 818 (1907). Moreover, although the right to game on ones property is superior to that of trespassers, the State's property right to regulate wildlife is superior to the property owner's "Wildlife is the property of the state." RCW 77.12.010. "Game is not a property right appurtenant to land. Game belongs to the State." State v. Quigley, 52 Wn.2d 234, 236, 324 P.2d 827 (1958). As such, one cannot successfully maintain that he killed hunting dogs in defense of wildlife or of his property. State v. Long, 98 Wn. App. 669, 676 (2000).

    If the shooter shoots a dog chasing a deer (or any undomesticated creature that is regulated by the state or governmental agency) where they are not on his property, he likely will not be protected by the law, and will be liable to the dog owner for the value of the dog.

    But, such protracted discussions on this topic are better suited to another forum.
    The reason I specifically excluded hunting dogs during hunting season...the thought was more unsupervised (or wild) dogs, not on their owners property, (maybe on my property, maybe on state/federal property) harassing game.

    I have always trained my dogs to just ignore deer...just for this reason. For some dogs this is an easy lesson to lear, others, not so easy.

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    Regular Member bmg50cal's Avatar
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    http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=77.36.030

    RCW 77.36.030
    Trapping or killing wildlife threatening human safety or causing property damage — limitations and conditions — rules.


    (1) Subject to limitations and conditions established by the commission, the owner, the owner's immediate family member, the owner's documented employee, or a tenant of real property may trap, consistent with RCW 77.15.194, or kill wildlife that is threatening human safety or causing property damage on that property, without the licenses required under RCW 77.32.010 or authorization from the director under RCW 77.12.240.

    (2) The commission shall establish the limitations and conditions of this section by rule. The rules must include:

    (a) Appropriate protection for threatened or endangered species;

    (b) Instances when verbal or written permission is required to kill wildlife;

    (c) Species that may be killed under this section; and

    (d) Requirements for the disposal of wildlife trapped or killed under this section.

    (3) In establishing the limitations and conditions of this section, the commission shall take into consideration the recommendations of the Washington state wolf conservation and management plan.

    [2009 c 333 61; 1996 c 54 4.]

    __________________________________________________ __________


    http://apps.leg.wa.gov/wac/default.aspx?cite=232-36-051

    WAC 232-36-051
    Killing wildlife causing private property damage.
    Last edited by bmg50cal; 10-16-2012 at 12:14 AM.

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    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hermannr View Post
    It has also been my understanding (very old mind you) that any dog chasing deer or elk (game animal) may also be legally shot if not on property owned or under control of that dogs owner...exceptions are for licensed hounds during licensed bear or Cougar chase seasons. Is that correct?
    If you are quick with a backhoe, you're golden.
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

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    Regular Member bmg50cal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amlevin View Post
    If you are quick with a backhoe, you're golden.
    That or you are masterful with grilling and like fresh meat.

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    Regular Member Lammo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    I'd better get back on topic.

    So, when a Greyhound is about to run over my Rabbit, I can shoot?



    (Does this count as a triple? Property defense, transportation, dog racing.)
    I'm going to have to call a fowl on this one. :-)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lammo View Post
    I'm going to have to call a fowl on this one. :-)




    So, if a Fox is going after my Roadrunner, I can shoot?
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lammo View Post
    I'm going to have to call a fowl on this one. :-)
    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post




    So, if a Fox is going after my Roadrunner, I can shoot?
    Oh deer!
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

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    Quote Originally Posted by sudden valley gunner View Post
    Oh deer!




    So, if someone is threatening my Deere, I can stop him with my Stag?
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Quote Originally Posted by citizen View Post
    if a toll collection crossbar is descending onto a continental or towncar, surely the driver can shoot. It would be a clear case of preventing a booth from hurting a lincoln.
    xd xd

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    Why only yesterday I saw an Audi Fox chasing a VW Rabbit....Should I have shot?

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    Shooting attacking animals

    Quote Originally Posted by Trigger Dr View Post
    Why only yesterday I saw an Audi Fox chasing a VW Rabbit....Should I have shot?
    Did they pass your GM volt?


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    Quote Originally Posted by Trigger Dr View Post
    Why only yesterday I saw an Audi Fox chasing a VW Rabbit....Should I have shot?



    Yes, but not at first. First, you ride your Charger to herd them into the sea. Then you use a Marlin to Savage them both.

    You see, its all about the correct tool for the job. If you are attacked by a swordfish, it wouldn't be sporting to shoot. Oh, no. You would use an Excalibur.

    Now its a little different if a Thunderbird is menacing a Skylark; you should deploy your Blackhawk immediately.

    And, if you suddenly see a Denali threatening a Yukon, you want to get your Alaskan into play as fast as you can. Side note: Its best not to use a Kahr when the fight involves two trucks.

    If a Cobra is menacing a Viper, you need to get your Bushmaster on target quick. Although, a Python may do the trick, also.

    Don't pay attention to the recent false report that you can only use as much force as confronts you. If AOJ is present, there is no rule requiring even Stevens. Use whatever you Judge will solve the problem.



    Bonus riddle: Who should you call if your personal-size whisky barrel leaks? Why, a Mini Cooper, of course.
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    Last edited by Citizen; 10-18-2012 at 05:34 AM.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

  21. #21
    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trigger Dr View Post
    Why only yesterday I saw an Audi Fox chasing a VW Rabbit....Should I have shot?
    Were you on your hog?
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by sudden valley gunner View Post
    Were you on your hog?
    No, I was in my Stutz Bearcat.

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    If a home dog wants your clams you give them your colt python instead.

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    Regular Member rapgood's Avatar
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    Please, oh please! Most wonderous administrator! LOCK THIS PAINFUL THREAD!
    Oh please, oh please, oh please!
    Rev. Robert Apgood, Esq.

    A right cannot be lost by exercising it. McDonald v. Chicago, 561 U.S. 3025, 130 S. Ct. 3020, 3021, 177 L. Ed. 2d 894 (2010) (citing Near v. Minn., 283 U.S. 697 (1931)).

    Although IAAL, anything I say here is not legal advice. No conversations we may have privately or otherwise in this forum constitute the formation of an attorney-client relationship, and are not intended to do so.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by rapgood View Post
    Please, oh please! Most wonderous administrator! LOCK THIS PAINFUL THREAD!
    Oh please, oh please, oh please!
    Why? Are you afraid someone is going to steal it? We can...uh...Ford to have a little fun.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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