Private Property Law for Dogs 101

Dear Dogs of All Breeds and Varieties, but especially Bulldogs:

This is a basic short course on the private property rights of humans vis-à-vis canines and, to a lesser extent, the property rights of dogs vis-à-vis other dogs. None of these rules are binding in any jurisdiction except my house and my yard. And car. And tent. And anyplace else my property happens to be.


RULE #1 – LEAVE MY STUFF ALONE!                                                                                                           You will know it is my stuff if:

  • I am holding it (because jumping up and grabbing it out of my hand does not make it yours);
  • it smells even a little bit like me (even if it also smells a little bit like you and has dog hair all over it);
  • it is clothing (and you know good and well that dogs don’t wear clothing unless a human makes them);
  • it is a cup, empty or with any liquid or solid in it (Just because a cup looks like a little bowl does not mean you may shove your nose into it or take anything out of it.);
  • it is a plate ON A TABLE (and that includes anything on the plate ON A TABLE);
  • it is a foot covering for a human WHETHER THE HUMAN IS WEARING IT OR NOT; or
  • it is part of any collection that I use or own even if it looks like a dog toy or little stick. (Pens and pencils are not sticks and do not belong in your mouths.)

This list may be amended and/or updated as the items that you attempt to abscond with, sneak off with, steal, chew, sniff, throw up on, pee or poop on, eat, or otherwise show excessive interest in become known.

RULE #2 – UNLESS INVITED BY THE DOG, LEAVE OTHER DOGS’ STUFF ALONE!                                      You will know that you have been invited if:

  • The other dog brings you the toy and offers it to you by laying it down or shoving it in your face;
  • The toy is abandoned and no other dog is claiming it (“Abandoned” is defined as alone, muddy, trampled, and/or sometimes covered in slobber, urine, and/or feces. It is solely in your discretion whether to claim such a nasty thing or not.); or
  • The other dog comes up to you with the toy in his/her mouth and waits for you to take half of it in your mouth so that you can both run off together carrying the toy jointly. In such an event, you each share 50% of the toy until you don’t want it anymore and let go of it or until you both allow another dog(s) to share, in which case your ownership is reduced proportionally by the number of dogs running with the toy in their mouths.

Growling, threatening, or fighting over toys is not allowed and will result in the immediate removal of the toy(s) under dispute by a qualified, authorized human. Toys so removed may be returned after an appropriate cooling off period and upon petition to the human by the interested dog parties.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me for clarification.

To preserve good order and peace among humans and dogs, Dear Dogs, obey these rules.



©2016 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

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