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This chapter discusses the challenges of determining appropriate remedies in cases involving animals with a focus on companion animals. Damages fall into one of two categories: substitutionary relief, which is based on the value of loss of the animal, and specific relief, which “seeks to either avoid harm, undo the harm, or repair the harm in kind.” In private law cases the primary relief sought is substitutionary damages. The changing role of companion animals in people’s lives is leading to an expanding range of available damages, such as companionship value, emotional distress and punitive damages. Of course, the jurisdiction’s substantive law governs the availability of damages.

GW Paper Series

GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2013-70; GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 2013-70

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