Purchasing a pet is an important financial decision that should not be taken lightly. In order to ensure both the seller and purchaser are protected in the transaction, it’s important to draft a dog bill of sale to document the transaction.
A Puppy/dog Bill of Sale Form is a legal document noting the terms and conditions of the agreement in which a dog is transferred from an original owner to another, usually in exchange for money or another form of payment.
In most cases, the dog/puppy bill of sale form is issued to the buyer once the transaction has been completed; that is, the purchase price has been paid upfront. A dog or puppy bill of sale form is similar to a receipt or an adoption contract, and it serves as proof of ownership should the new owner be questioned in the future.
Whether the dog is a gift or is being given up for adoption, a dog/puppy bill of sale form is necessary to document the transfer of ownership from the original owner to a new owner. The dog/puppy bill of sale form can be signed with a deposit being made for a sale at a later date, especially where the buyer buys a puppy that is still dependent on its mother’s milk as a source of nutrition or as a sale for the same day of transfer of ownership.
Generally, a dog or puppy bill of sale form is relatively simple to complete. It requires providing only the most essential information, including the name of the seller and buyer, the dog’s identifying information, the purchase or selling price, and the signatures of both parties. The dog or puppy bill of sale form is also often used for a sale on the same day of transfer of ownership to the buyer or for a sale of a young puppy at a later date, which further adds to the element of ease and simplicity in the procedure of completing and using it. However, to be valid, a dog/puppy bill of sale form must be notarized by a public citizen.
Things to Know About Dog Sale
It is important to understand a procedure and to get educated prior to selling or buying a dog. Following are a few common queries about this topic and their explanation:
Is there any specific state law regarding selling a dog ?
A puppy has to be no less than eight (8) weeks of age to be eligible for sale in most states. However, this varies depending on the state.
Instances Where one needs a dog/puppy bill of sale form
A dog or puppy bill of sale form is essential for dog sellers, breeders, and owners. Having a written record of the sale works as protection in case any of these mentioned individuals ever have to verify whether they own the pet or not.
Some of the most common instances where one needs the dog/puppy bill of sale form include:
- Selling a puppy or dog as a breeder: Like any other private business, dog breeders run a business, and state-federal laws require them to file their income taxes from time to time. When a breeder sells a dog using a dog/puppy bill of sale form, they can use the document as a receipt to refer back to when filing their taxes.
- Wants to sell a dog that one can no longer take care of: A dog/puppy bill of sale form usually stipulates the terms of sale and agreement between the dog’s owner and the new buyer. If there is ever a dispute and either party denies the existence of the transaction, the bill of sale form is a source of solid evidence to present in court. Nonetheless, if one party does not adhere to the provisions set forth within the dog/puppy bill of sale form, they can be taken to court.
- Wants to sell due to other reasons: Such reasons are ‘because he/she is moving to a new place due to work reasons’, ‘retirement’, ‘the dog’s adaptability with other pets’, etc By using a dog/puppy bill of sale form, the dog’s original owner has legal proof that they have been released of any liabilities associated with maintenance of the dog and are no longer legally responsible for the animal.
Why is the dog/puppy bill of sale form important?
A dog or puppy bill of sale form is a legal document that defines the conditions and terms for the sale or transfer of ownership of a dog from an original owner to a new owner. This document is vital as it officiates the sale and proves that there is a new owner. Essentially, the dog or puppy bill of sale form makes the terms of the agreement legally binding to both the seller or dog breeder and the buyer. Thus, the dog or puppy bill of sale form is essential due to the following reasons:
- It protects the buyer or seller of a dog from any misunderstandings or disagreements once the transaction has been completed
- The form proves that the seller has the right to sell the dog
- The dog or puppy bill of sale form stipulates warranties in case of fraud, misinformation, or unpredictable incidents
- It is used to document that a down payment has been paid for a puppy that is not yet born or which is still dependent on its mother’s milk as a source of nutrition
- This form stipulates that all the information concerning the dog’s breed, health, and the condition is accurate at the time of purchase. This relieves the original dog owner from any liabilities concerning the dog’s future expenses.
Selling a dog
Several reasons can force a dog owner or breeder to sell their dog or give it up for adoption. Some of these reasons may be personal, such as moving to a new state or an issue with the dog, for example, not getting along with other pets in the house. However, if the dog or puppy is aggressive or has an issue that can lead to someone being hurt, it should not be sold unless the buyer is equipped to train a dog with behavioral issues. With all that said and done, selling a dog or puppy is emotionally tormenting and draining since one would be selling their friend, especially if one has had the dog for many years. To ensure that the dog or puppy gets a loving and caring home, consult the following step by step guide to begin the process of selling the dog:
Prepare the dog
Ordinarily, only the owner or breeder knows their dog’s personality and character traits. Even if the dog is sweet and lovable, people may be cynical about adopting or buying it if it is unkempt or not medicated. Hence, the seller should give the dog good grooming and bring it to the vet for a checkup. If the dog has never been neutered, it is recommended that the seller increase its desirability.
Keynote: If a dog owner originally purchased a dog from a reputable dog breeder, he/she likely signed a contract that required him/her to return the dog to the breeder if they can no longer possess or take care of it. If this is the case, then the necessary procedure for selling the dog ends here.
Once the dog is ready for a sale, the seller should find an excellent strategy to market it and increase the number of interested potential buyers. Before launching a more comprehensive search for a new home for the dog or puppy, the seller can start by reaching out to friends and family and asking them if they would be willing to buy or adopt the dog/puppy. The main benefit of selling the dog to a friend or family is that the seller can trust them to take great care of the dog. If there are no interested friends or families, the seller can proceed to launch other more expansive marketing techniques such as:
- Posting an ad in local newspapers: This is an excellent way of reaching more customers locally. While using this marketing technique, the dog owner or seller should provide the dog’s apt description, including the appearance, age, name (if any), breed type, gender, and health condition. The seller should also provide their contact information and address for easy customer accessibility and convenience.
- Post an ad on online platforms: One can post on online platforms such as Facebook Marketplace, Instagram, Craigslist, or local ASPCA. If the seller decides to use this method to market their puppy or dog, doing a dog video while performing tricks or playing would be a great idea. Moreover, include clear snapshots of the dog and provide a detailed description of the dog’s vital statistics. It is worth noting that most buyers would want to know the reason behind selling the dog and whether the pet is neutered or spayed. Be sure to provide buyers with truthful information, as lying about it will only be costly later on in life.
Note: when selling a dog/puppy online, the seller should always be wary of scammers and fraudsters, as these are always a possibility. Ensure also to have a dog/puppy bill of sale form ready and provide a concise description in the dog’s profile that communicates the intent to meet potential buyers in person before proceeding with the sale further.
- Put up flyers in the neighborhood: This approach can be used to spread the word about selling the dog. Remember to include the dog’s identifying information, including age, sex, health condition, breed, and provide clear pictures of the dog from all angles and contact information.
Meet potential buyers
Essentially, a seller wants to be sure that their dog will find a safe, caring, and loving home. Thus, meet with the buyer and ask them questions about past pet ownership, why they want to buy the dog, what their home environment is like and how they intend to take care of the dog. In most cases, the potential buyers would also have screening questions for the seller. Such questions include why the seller is selling the specific dog and questions about the dog’s current health status. Ensure to answer these questions with utmost honesty to avoid possible legal issues and complaints in the future.
Complete bill of sale form
Once the seller has identified a suitable owner, vetted them, and is ready to pay or adopt the dog/puppy, completing the bill of sale form is necessary. Typically, the money should be received before writing the form, but this doesn’t matter where the transaction is low value, or the dog is being given for free. When preparing the dog/ puppy bill of sale form, make sure to include the following crucial details, or rather have this information readily available before filling out the document:
- The Names and Addresses of the buyer/breeder and seller
- The buying/selling price
- The dog/ puppy’s information including its name (if any), breed type, date of birth (if known), gender, color, registration number (if applicable), and health condition.
- Deposits, especially if a puppy is less than eight weeks old or can’t leave its mother yet. Include the transfer dates if this is the case.
- Warranties if any. The seller may allow for a warranty during a certain time period after the purchase in case any medical or other issues arise. Acceptable reasons for return may be listed here as well.
- Signatures and printed dates from both the involved parties, as well as a witnesses’ signature.
Notarize the dog/puppy bill of sale form
Once the puppy/dog bill of sale form has been completed and signed by all the required parties, visit a public notary and request them for a certificate of Acknowledgement. This will officiate the dog/puppy bill of sale form and finalize the ‘As-Is” transaction.
Free Bill of Sale Forms
Here are Free dog bill of sale forms that can be customized as per need:
During the transfer of a dog or puppy from a breeder or an original owner to a new owner or buyer, the use of a dog/puppy bill of sale form is essential. This is because the dog/puppy bill of sale form legalizes the transaction and can be used by the new owner to prove ownership of the dog. However, to legally bind the terms of the agreement to both the buyer and seller, the form needs to be notarized by a notary citizen. Thus, whenever one is selling or buying a dog or puppy, make sure to follow our how-to-sell-a dog/puppy process and complete a dog/ puppy bill of sale form as required.