Dogfight in Court Over Champion Poodle

BILLINGS, Mont. (CN) – Two poodle breeders in England refuse to return world champion Pinafore Sea Biscuit to his owners and have bred “a minimum of 27 litters of poodles” with him without paying for it, a married couple claims in Federal Court.

     Don and Roberta Chowning say that Marlene Carter of Tennessee and Penny Harney of Oxford, England, persuaded them to sell an interest in Pinafore Sea Biscuit for the purpose of sending the dog to England to seek the world championship. The poodle already had earned the American Kennel Club championship, the Chownings say.
     In England, the dog won the “Federation Cynologic Internationale” championship, and was named “World Champion Standard Poodle” in 2008, according to the complaint.
     But the Chownings say that while the dog was overseas, Harney registered him at the Kennel Club in England and named the Harney and Carter partnership as the sole owner of Sea Biscuit, forging the Chownings’ signatures on the paperwork.
     The Chownings say Harney and Carter studded out the dog “on at least twenty-seven separate occasions” without their permission and have refused to pay them half the stud proceeds.
     The Chownings say Harney and Carter have ignored their demands to send Pinafore Sea Biscuit back to the United States. The Chownings say Sea Biscuit is worth more than $75,000.
     The Chownings seek $194,500 in damages for conversion, breach of contract, business defamation and emotional distress. They are represented by Joel Guthals of Guthals, Hunnes & Reuss.

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