Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 3.2. Agriculture, Animal Care, and Food
Chapter 65. Comprehensive Animal Care
11/24/2020

Article 4. Boarding Establishments and Groomers.

§ 3.2-6518. Boarding establishments and groomers; veterinary care requirements; consumer notification; penalty.

A. When an animal is boarded at a boarding establishment, or under the care, custody or subject to the actions of a groomer, the boarding establishment or groomer shall be responsible for providing the animal care requirements for each animal as specified in § 3.2-6503.

B. If an animal becomes ill or injured while in the custody of the boarding establishment or groomer, the boarding establishment or groomer shall provide the animal with emergency veterinary treatment for the illness or injury. The consumer shall bear the reasonable and necessary costs of emergency veterinary treatment for any illness or injury occurring while the animal is in the custody of the boarding establishment or groomer. The boarding establishment or groomer shall pay for veterinary treatment of any injury that the animal sustains while at the establishment or under the care or custody of a groomer if the injury resulted from the establishment's or groomer's failure, whether accidental or intentional, to provide the care required by § 3.2-6503, or if the injury is a result of the actions of the boarding establishment or groomer. Boarding establishments and groomers shall not be required to bear the cost of veterinary treatment for injuries resulting from the animal's self-mutilation.

C. If an animal is seized from a boarding establishment or groomer because of the establishment's or groomer's failure to provide adequate food, water, shelter, exercise, and care as defined in § 3.2-6500 and required by § 3.2-6503 or because of any other violation of this chapter, the animal shall be returned to the rightful owner as soon as possible or, if the owner refuses to reclaim the animal, be impounded and disposition made pursuant to § 3.2-6569.

D. Violation of this section by a boarding establishment or groomer is a Class 1 misdemeanor.

1993, c. 174, § 3.1-796.83:1; 1996, c. 249; 2008, c. 860.

§ 3.2-6519. Written notice of consumer remedies required to be supplied by boarding establishments; penalty.

A. A boarding establishment shall give the notice hereinafter set forth in writing to a consumer prior to the consumer's delivery of the animal to the boarding establishment. Such notice shall be embodied in a written document and shall state in ten-point boldfaced type the following:

NOTICE

The boarding of animals is subject to Article 4 (§ 3.2-6518 et seq.) of Chapter 65 of Title 3.2. If your animal becomes ill or injured while in the custody of the boarding establishment, the boarding establishment shall provide the animal with emergency veterinary treatment for the illness or injury.

The consumer shall bear the reasonable and necessary costs of emergency veterinary treatment for any illness or injury occurring while the animal is in the custody of the boarding establishment. The boarding establishment shall bear the expenses of veterinary treatment for any injury the animal sustains while at the boarding establishment if the injury resulted from the establishment's failure, whether accidental or intentional, to provide the care required by § 3.2-6503. Boarding establishments shall not be required to bear the cost of veterinary treatment for injuries resulting from the animal's self-mutilation.

B. In addition, the boarding establishment shall display the following notice, in ten-point boldfaced type, on a sign placed in a conspicuous location and manner at the boarding establishment's intake area:

PUBLIC NOTICE

THE BOARDING OF ANIMALS BY A BOARDING ESTABLISHMENT IS SUBJECT TO ARTICLE 4 (§ 3.2-6518 et seq.) OF CHAPTER 65 OF TITLE 3.2 OF THE CODE OF VIRGINIA. YOU HAVE SPECIFIC REMEDIES WHEN BOARDING ANIMALS IN THIS OR ANY OTHER BOARDING ESTABLISHMENT IN VIRGINIA. A COPY IS AVAILABLE IMMEDIATELY UPON REQUEST AND IS TO BE PRESENTED TO YOU AT THE TIME OF INTAKE IN THE FORM OF A WRITTEN DOCUMENT. IF YOU HAVE A COMPLAINT, YOU MAY CONTACT YOUR LOCAL LAW-ENFORCEMENT OFFICER OR THE VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE AND CONSUMER SERVICES, RICHMOND, VIRGINIA.

C. Failure to display or provide the consumer with the written notice as required by this section is a Class 3 misdemeanor.

D. Any violation of this section shall also constitute a prohibited practice under § 59.1-200 and shall be subject to the enforcement provisions of the Virginia Consumer Protection Act (§ 59.1-196 et seq.).

1993, c. 174, § 3.1-796.83:2; 1998, c. 817; 2008, c. 860; 2020, c. 412.

§ 3.2-6520. Procedure for animals left unclaimed with veterinarian or boarding establishment after public notice; lien; sale.

Any animal not claimed by its owner from a licensed veterinarian or boarding establishment within 14 days after a letter of notice has been sent to the owner, by the veterinarian or boarding establishment, may be sold by the veterinarian or boarding establishment. The animal may be sold at public or private sale for fair compensation to a person capable of providing care consistent with this chapter. Any expense incurred by the veterinarian or boarding establishment becomes a lien on the animal and the proceeds of the sale shall first discharge this lien. Any balance of the proceeds shall be paid to the owner. If the owner cannot be found within the next ensuing 30 days, the balance shall be paid to the Literary Fund. If no purchaser is found, the animal may be offered for adoption or euthanized.

1984, c. 492, § 29-213.45; 1987, c. 488, § 3.1-796.75; 1993, c. 174; 2008, c. 860.