May 20, 2020 Feature

Valuation of Companion Animals: A Possible Solution to the Puzzle

By Stephen Tuck
Elephant etching

Elephant etching

Andrew_Howe/E+ via Getty Images

The last edition of TortSource published an intriguing article on the challenges involved in seeking non-economic loss damages for harm to companion animals. See Lenore Montanaro, Valuation of Companion Animals, 22(2) TortSource 6 (2020).The article drew a contrast between economic loss associated with harm to an animal used commercially and the compensation proper to a pet, which oftentimes is considered a member of one’s family. On one hand, this is a reasonable distinction to make, noting the ruthlessly mechanistic analysis that can be taken for animals whose use is primarily economic. Consider the following observation:

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