The $250,000 Dog-The Crooked & The Crazy

Since Piper went home to Veronica, many thought the battle was over…. that she had won the case.  But no sooner had they left the courtroom when COSR/Penny Sanderbeck  filed an appeal, trying to rip Piper away from Veronica AGAIN.  The appeal pended for 8 months and came up for discussion just when Piper was finally settling in and acting like  her own self.

Well, here’s the update for those who did not hear about the strangeness that happened at that hearing.


The court promptly dismissed COSR/Sanderbeck’s appeal and right now Piper is allowed to stay with Veronica.  Quite honestly, the court’s response was about what we expected. Those following this case have always known it was a matter of common sense that Piper should have been sent home, and sent home to stay. As each decision comes through, we observers utter a collective, “Well NO DUH!”.

But here’s where it gets strange…. after over a year of COSR/Sanderbeck claiming she was making a difference “One Dog At A Time” and that it was all about Piper and what she felt was “in her best interest”, she pulled the rug out from under all of us and threw on a bright red pair of Animal Rights devil horns.

At one point the judges asked what the mission of the rescue was, and why they would want the dog so badly?  It’s never made sense to those of us who are sane, and it didn’t make sense to the equally sane courts.

The answer was one that NO ONE expected. Attorney Bell stated that at this point, they DIDN’T WANT PIPER BACK.


Yes, that’s what he said. THEY DIDN’T WANT PIPER BACK.  Now let’s break that down in Crazy Town speak:

The courts:”We gave Piper back to Veronica”

Crazy Town AKA COSR: “But WE want Piper. We want the courts to reconsider that hasty decision!”

The Courts: “Alright, but it’s going to take 8 months, waste the court’s time, and cost Veronica a whole lot more money.”

Crazy Town: “BONUS!”

(8 months and thousands of dollars later…)

The Courts: “Okay, here we are, let’s talk about their decision to give the dog back.”

Crazy Town: “Oh, we don’t actually want the dog after all. We would like them to stop saying we did the wrong thing and that we were right all along. We would also like the courts to reflect that anytime someone loses a dog and it ends up in rescue, the owner can’t re-claim it. We’d like to institute Finder’s Keepers.”

(jaws drop…. confusion ensues)

Of course I’m paraphrasing and using my Crazy Town dictionary to translate, but that is what it boils down to.

After kicking and screaming that they were doing what is best for Piper and refusing to give her back for a year and a half, why would they no longer want her?  They were appealing the decision to give Veronica custody at that very moment… that’s why they were all there in the first place! Could it be because just a month before, Veronica went public with the fact that she had Piper spayed?  Veronica has been criticized by the opposition for wanting Piper back, saying she just wanted to breed her, yet as soon as she’s spayed it is COSR/Penny Sanderbeck who suddenly doesn’t want her.  Interesting turn of events and makes one wonder what motive a rescue might have for wanting to keep an unspayed champion Sheltie in the first place.


So where do they want to go from here? Yes, you read it right above. It appears they want to attack pet ownership rights. They’d like the courts to say that as soon as a rescue gets their hands on your lost dog, you have no rights to it anymore.  Forget the fact you can prove ownership, forget the fact you may have invested a fortune in training or showing, forget the fact you may have owned the dog since it was a puppy and your kids cry themselves to sleep every night.  Forget the fact it may be a service dog necessary for your health and irreplaceable, forget the fact it may be a therapy dog for your autistic child, forget all of that.  COSR wants rescues to legally be able to shut you out regardless of your documentation of ownership or the many years you have spent with your beloved pet. They want “Finders Keepers”.

The point of a shelter contacting a breed rescue is to save the dog from being euthanized and giving the dog a chance at getting a home or finding it’s old one.  It’s supposed to be about SAVING their lives.  But it appears COSR wants to make it about POSSESSION.  So now it’s about a commodity…. about property…. resale value…. control… all of the above?  It sure looks like it doesn’t it?

Recently a judge in Texas strongly disagreed with that by ruling in favor of the owners of a German Shepherd who fought a rescue for three long years to get him back. The judge said NO, owners do NOT sever ownership rights when a rescue gets their dog. Winning Piper’s case is going to help solidify that even further and gain more ground for pet owners in the ongoing attack on pet ownership by animal rights activists, and by certain disreputable rescues who have an ever increasing shortage of “highly adoptable” dogs.

So this is where we are at. Another wasted 8 months, thousands in attorney’s fees, and wasting many hours of the court’s time to make the statement that they want to reduce our rights as pet owners. The next step is on to trial and this time it’s not to keep Piper, but to fight specifically to keep this from happening again and to keep the rescue from pushing their agenda to take away our rights. Shame on them, and bless Veronica for bearing that heavy weight. It’s very easy for the rest of us to sit back and cheer on the fight from afar and go about our lives as usual.  For Veronica, her life has been turned upside down and inside out.  Financially, emotionally, business wise, personally…. in every way her life could be interrupted and twisted around, it has.

To add insult to injury, in the process of trying to fund a fight of over $170,000.00… with an estimated end cost of around $250,000.00… a few involved took advantage of Veronica. Apparently feeling a sense of “entitlement” for helping her out, a clear agreement was broken.  One of her other dogs was taken and given to a home she had not approved of, and she was blatantly stabbed in the back by people she trusted.  There could not have been a worse betrayal considering all she went through with Piper. It was like splitting open the same wound all over again.  COSR felt “entitled” to Piper.  How does someone feel entitled to take another one of Veronica’s dogs but think they are no different?  But people will do strange things when they want something for themselves and unfortunately, justification is a twisted talent many people possess.   Those who fall victim to people who use it, feel a helplessness and sense of betrayal that makes one angry and sad at the same time.


It’s not right.  But that’s the sad situation.  The short bus to Crazy Town picked up some passengers. And it’s a one way trip, because they’re not welcome back here with the ethical and sane anymore.

So Veronica made some changes in how fundraising has been handled the past few months as she waits for the pending court date to be announced. In the meantime… the attorney’s fees continue to add up. Supporters who thought the court case was over have moved on and the case has largely been supported by those who have continued to follow what is going on, even after the sensationalism and drama has died down.  This is when when every dollar counts.

There is power in numbers, so please help this case by donating whatever you are able to afford and even if you cannot donate, please SHARE this story!  Share it on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, forums and groups…. wherever you feel there are people who would not want their pet ownership rights to be taken away.

Piper is home.  Veronica’s fight is all but over. No one would blame Veronica one bit if tomorrow she said, “I want my life back.”  and threw in the towel. But she’s stepped up to take the bullet for the rest of us and dog owners NEED this win. We need EVERY win we can get at this point.  Look at what is happening to the Upton German Shepherds. Several puppies and one adult dead while the owner pays over $6K per month to those who took them without cause in the first place.  Look what happened to the Boston Terrier “Sassy” after the Boston Terrier Rescue  of East Tennessee and the Boston Terrier Rescue of North Texas got hold of her.  The owner stepped forward to claim his dog within hours yet it’s been over 8 months since the owner has seen his dog and he has to drag a rescue through court to get her back.  Yes, these are “RESCUES”!

We need to hold those accountable who break the rules or overstep their bounds so that ethical rescues aren’t reflected upon poorly. Rescues are vital.  Those who masquerade as such and abuse the system need to answer to the public for making a mockery of real rescues everywhere.  They need to answer to the public for violating our rights.

Please donate if you can to support this case. Please SHARE SHARE SHARE to get the word out about what has been happening to our rights under our very noses.

The email address below is now the ONLY PayPal address to donate towards Piper’s Legal Fund.

Donations can be sent through PayPal to:  (You can make donations with PayPal by credit card even if you do not have a PayPal account)

Or go to the GoFundMe page at:

(If this story is new to you, please read my other articles posted below, there are several dating back to May of 2015)




12 thoughts on “The $250,000 Dog-The Crooked & The Crazy

  1. And now another rescue/shelter is pulling the same crap, but now with Paul Upton and with many german shepherds. It’s costing him around $6000 per month and several of his dogs have died in the last few months.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I have to admit, I got a little teary eyed when I was forwarded these messages from the Legal Fund team.
    “Sending what I can to help with the legal battle. I don’t have much since I’m currently unemployed.” and “Veronica, so sorry this battle continues. Here’s some more to help. I support Piper and pet ownership rights…”
    These supporters are AMAZING! We all have to work together to defend our rights. Thank you for stepping up to help!!!


  3. Some of these “rescues” are just dog flippers. I know of one that gets dogs transported for free, from shelters in Alabama. The dogs are already spayed and neutered, and have gotten their shots. Total cost less than 50.00. Sometimes they get free dogs from people who can’t keep them. The next day they are on the “rescue” site for $650.00. If that’s not flipping for profit I don’t know what is. I don’t make a fuss because the dogs are getting homes, so ultimately there’s a happy ending. As soon as it became popular to have a rescue, the money grubbers started appearing. It’s not all rescues, but some are terrible.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I would like very much for you to clarify whether you really mean that they asked for the court to declare that a dog legally belongs to a rescue “as soon as” it comes into its possession, or if that’s one of your “paraphrases,” because it matters very much. No rescue could operate if they are never deemed to have valid rights to a dog – it is in no one’s best interests to allow owners to reclaim their dogs no matter how little they did to find them in a timely manner. But there’s a very big difference between asking for a reasonable reclamation period, and asking for there to be no reclamation period at all. (I know the owners in this particular case brought their ownership to the rescue’s attention within a reasonable time.)


    1. Their exact words in the appellate court were “we would want at this point is a clear consent
      judgement that our clients were the owners of that dog when it was released from the Franklin
      County Animal Shelter”

      They want to have complete ownership as soon as the shelter turns the dog over. So a shelter that only holds the dog 3 days and then turns it over to a rescue would be eliminating all hope of an owner being able to re-claim a dog beyond that. A rescue is supposed to give the dog more time to be claimed or to find a home. They are “rescuing it”, not pulling a snatch and grab for resale. This particular rescue wants to make the snatch and grab easier and permanent.


  5. Unfortunately not just the dog world rescues….happening in all areas of animal ownership. Even when there are seizures of supposedly neglected animals…they are held for a very brief time by the seizing authority (or turned over to a rescue immediately) and disposed of often before the owner is even charged with anything. The rescues sometimes then contact the owner, demanding registration papers “or we will spay/neuter/castrate”. Even if the owner gets charged (sometimes not even done, other times done but with misdemeanor charges that are reduced/plea bargained down to nothing over a period of time) and were to go to trial and win, the animals are gone and the only option becomes a civil battle with the seizing authority and/or the rescue. The value of the animals for breeding is gone, sometimes along with bloodlines that cannot be replaced.


  6. A correction to the article. I posted about Piper being spayed just 5 days before the hearing. I also located Piper within the first 24 hours of the rescue acquiring her. Everybody seems to forget the federal APHIS law that requires a 5 day hold by both the shelter and most rescues for the owner to reclaim/find their dog. Both the shelter and rescue had the vets contact info to find the owner. The shelter made one call late Good Friday afternoon and at 11:01 am Monday turned Pier over to COSR (Easter weekend, vet was closed all weekend but had asked for time on Good Friday to retrieve owners info). COSR could have made one call and gotten owners contact info but never made even one attempt to place that call!


  7. I volunteer for a canine rescue and we took in a dog that was never claimed at a shelter in our state, got her completely vetted and put her up for adoption, we had an approved applicant that had met her on the home visit ready to adopt her. Suddenly the former owner contacts us (I don’t remember all of the details why the owner didn’t find her at the shelter, sorry, but I do know the shelter kept her longer than Ohio’s 3 business days hold) So this owner sends us photos and it’s undeniable that its her dog. Regardless of why she lost the dog and didn’t find it on her own, we arranged for her to pick it up at the foster home. Yes, the person who wanted to adopt her was very disappointed, got angry and refused to meet any other dogs, but it was the right thing to do.


  8. Im trying to figure out how the legal fees got so high. I recently dealt with a civil matter and it dragged on for about two years with numerous law n motion hearings, pleadings, responses, discovery, subpoenas- the works. KNock down drag out ugly is what it was- and the cost was no where near what this case has run up.
    perhaps other people in the breed community weren’t the only ones taking advantage. Id like to see the billing for this case.


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