They say a dog is a man's best friend, but what if the same pet becomes a subject of ownership tussle between two friends that eventually ends up in court?
This is the case for two neighbours fighting over a pet dog that has led to a costly court battle as a man claims the woman in the suit failed to return the pet borrowed to mate and breed her dam.
Julius Nyabando said that Dorris Moraa had borrowed his German Shepherd sire valued at Sh60,000 in July 2020 with an agreement to return it after siring with her dam.
Nyabando had filed the case before small claims court Resident Magistrate Dominic Macharia, alleging that they had entered into an agreement with Moraa orally promising to return the dog nicknamed Prince.
Another condition was that Moraa would ensure and guarantee the safety of the dog.
“When I handed over Prince to Moraa, he was healthy and in great physical condition to mate and breed successfully, and she agreed that she shall return him immediately after siring her dam,” Nyabando said.
In his petition, Nyabando alleged that more than a year later, Moraa has breached the agreement and refused to return the sire dog.
Nyabondo told the court that Prince (the dog) was of great importance to him and has been severely affected by Moraa’s actions given that he is in the business of rearing dogs which has now stalled.
To him, this constitutes breach to their oral agreement which should not go unpunished.
Nyabando told the court the absence of the dog which was of great sentimental value has subjected him to grave mental torture and physical anguish.
He said his suspicion was that Mora had refused to return the dog because she had had converted him for her own use.
Nyabondo said despite numerous attempts and calls to Moraa for them to settle the issue, the accused had shown no commitment or respect for the same.
“My home has been exposed to insecurity in absence of Prince who played a key role to that matter,” he said.
But Moraa in her response told the court that Nyabando was suffering from sellers’ remorse, indicating that he had handed her untrained and partially vaccinated dog that was incapable of breeding.
“I know the plaintiff who is obviously suffering from a seller’s remorse on account of what the puppy he gave to me has grown to be,” she said.
She said Nyabando was her friend who had given her a dog that was at his construction site at Ngata in appreciation for giving him a free compacting machine and a vibrator to use on his site.
“On several occasions I paid for his construction workers as he was away in the USA, and that he was aware I did have another dog that stayed alone till April 2021 when I bought another female dog, brought her home and started breeding,” she said.
She Nyabando only started making demands for the dog after a vet who has been vaccinating them informed him the dog had matured and doing so well.
She alleged that the petitioner had gone ahead and reported the matter at Nakuru Central Police Station accusing her of refusing to give him the dog.
She alleged that as a result, police had broken into her compound when she was not at home and took away.
“The case was dismissed due to lack of documentation because the said dog did not have registration at the time he gave it to me on account of my assistance at his site,” she said.
Moraa said she later registered the dog.
The case will be mentioned on August 22 to determine where the parties involved had filed enough submissions.