March 23

Lady Gaga Dog Walker shot and her french bull dogs stolen

Cortes Law Firm Oklahoma City Estate Planning Attorney

Lady Gaga's French Bulldogs were stolen this past week at gunpoint. By the end of today's video, you'll know how to protect your furry friend while you are still living and what you can do to protect them, if you were to become incapacitated or even to pass away.

As you might've heard, Lady Gaga's dog walker was walking her three French Bulldogs When two criminals came up on him at gunpoint guys. The dog walker fought them back as best he could, but they ended up shooting him in the chest, stealing two of her three dogs.

The good news is the dogs have been returned. A lady walked into to a police station and returned both dogs. Now it's not clear whether or not she is actually going to get the $500,000 reward that had been put up by Lady Gaga. But the police have put her in contact with Lady Gaga's people. And while they don't think that this lady was involved in the crime, they are still investigating.

And so it probably will be a little while before there's any resolution of what exactly happened in this case. And that brings us to the six things that you can do to protect your furry friends whether you're at home or someplace else. And the first one you've probably already heard about and that is to microchip your dog or your cat. It is so important.

There have been thousands of recoveries of lost pets because somebody took the time and the little bit of money to microchip their pet. Microchip your pet in case anything were to ever happen to them and they would get separated from you. It costs a little bit of money to get it done and the costs have gone down, but it is well worth it, if you get separated from your pet the second one you probably already know about as well and that is don't let your dog off leash even when you go out walking your dog it is real easy for a dog, they're animals, right.

And they can get distracted. And so if they see a squirrel, Squirrel! Then it's possibly could run away and if you're not quick enough, or you're not young enough, you may not be able to chase them down and you'll get separated from your dog. When you're walking around the neighborhood the number two tip is keep them on a leash.

Number three, don't leave your dog unattended in your front yard. I know it can be tempting. Even if you have a fence around your yard, it can be tempting to let your dog run around in your front yard. But it's very easy for somebody to either open your gate, or just jump over the gate, take your dog, and be gone before you ever notice. So never leave your dog unattended in the front yard.

The number four tip is never leave your dog unattended in a car. It's kind of the same thing as number three. If you leave your dog unattended in a car, it's going to be really easy for a criminal to either open the door, or just simply break out the window and take your dog. So never leave your dog unattended in a car. Not to even mention it could be super cold for the dog in your car, or it could even be extremely hot for your dog, if it's in the summertime. So never leave your dog unattended in your car.

Tip number five, never leave your dog tied up outside of a store. I know it's so tempting. I wanted to do it many times myself when I had a Great Pyrenees, when I would just go in 'cause my dog was so friendly. Anybody who would come up to him, he would just pet and nuzzle with them.

And that right there is a danger. He was friendly to everybody. So if I were to tie him up outside of a store while I ran in real quick to get a drink of water or a soda or something, there's a good chance that he would walk off with somebody else just because he was such a friendly dog. So never leave your dog tied up unattended outside of a store. That's a big one. 

Number six, you knew I was going to bring this back to estate planning, didn't you? That's what we talk about on this channel, estate planning, probate and trust administration. So how do you protect your dog in an estate plan? Simple, you get a pet trust. Now I'm not talking necessarily about a completely separate trust.

That is separate from all of your other estate planning documents. What we like to do is make your pet trust part of your revocable living trust centered estate plan. So we actually put language in there for your pet to take care of your pet inside of your revocable living trust. And how does this work? Well, first of all, I know a lot of you are probably laughing because why would you take care of your dog after you pass away?

Well, it's not only if you pass away, it's if you become incapacitated, especially with what's going on in the world right now, what if you end up in the hospital for a month or two months. You want to make sure that your furry friends whether it's cat dogs, fish, turtles whatever it is are taken care of while you are sick in the hospital and that they will be ready and waiting for you when you get back. How do we do it? Pet trust?

Well, the simplest way, I have been able to figure it out is literally put pen to paper. And you've heard me talk about it in this video up here where I go, in-depth about a pet trust. Put pen to paper and figure out what your monthly costs are for your pet. Food, medicine, toys, do they go to daycare? Add up all those expenses and write them down and figure out what it costs on a yearly basis, and then figure out what you predict your dog's life is gonna be from at the date that you are doing your revocable trust that you're creating the pet trust. Multiply that. So if I'm just going to make up a number let's say it costs a thousand dollars a year to take care of your dog.

And I know that's probably low for a lot of you but if you're the life expectancy for your dog is another 10 years then we would put it aside $10,000 into a pet trust. And the way we do it is great. So we actually in the pet trust say who is going to take care of your dog on a daily basis. That's the caretaker. And then what we do is we set up a trustee, who's actually in charge of the money. This is a person who puts the money in the bank and watches it, and pays you the caretaker to take care of the dog. Then we have a third person, who kind of oversees everything to make sure that the caretaker is actually taking care of the dog, and that the trustee is actually taking care of the money. So we have three people and these are usually your friends. So you pick, whoever your dog has an attraction to or has the best relationship with.

And hopefully that person will take care of your dog, if you were to get sick or even to pass away. And then you ask somebody else to be the trustee of the money and then you ask another friend to protect everybody. And so we have a checks and balances.

That has been the most successful way for us to set up pet trusts and the most successful way to protect you in knowing that your pet is gonna be taken care of. We're really excited that Lady Gaga's dogs are back with her. And if you want to protect your dogs to make sure that never happens to them and to protect them if something ever happened to you, then talk to your estate planning lawyer and get a pet trust. I know I've thrown a lot at you today, so that's why we've prepared our free guide on estate planning.

I'll put a link to it in the description below and in the comment section below that, so that you can download it and get started in the right direction. And to help you out even more, watch this video up here and this video up here. If you enjoyed this video, then guys please smash that Subscribe button and click on the Like button and also click on that little bell, so you'll get notified every time we post a new video. Have a great day and an awesome week and as always thanks for watching.


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