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In Germany, a family owing a debt had the family dog seized by the city of Ahlen. The City then sold the dog on EBay in order to pay for the debt.


1. What were the other assets that they considered seizing?
2. Who bought the dog and what was the new owner skeptical about?
3. After the new owner bought the dog, what happened and why is the owner now considering legal action against the city?
4. Months later, what are the three children keeping to remind them of their dog that was taken by the City?
5. What is your opinion of this incident?

Mettler, K. (2019) A family couldn’t pay the bills, so the city took their dog and sold it on eBay. The Washington Post, Feb. 28 (Retrievable online at