Zooey Deschanel is being sued by a horse owner

This is one of those cases where we won’t know who’s in the “right/wrong” until we hear all the details, but here’s a quick summary of what we do know: Zoey Deschanel is being sued by a horse owner named Patty Parker.  Parker is suing actress Zooey Deschanel (who stars in the Fox sitcom New Girl) and a horse trainer named Victoria LaCagnina.  Parker apparently put her two horses, Literati and Anastasia, in La Cagnina’s care after her daughters went off to college.  She also instructed LaCagnina to try and sell Literati.

Zooey Deschanel is a client of La Cagnina and Zooey signed a lease/option agreement for Literati (a show horse) in July of 2013 with Parker for $13,000.  The suit against Deschanel and LaCagnina alleges that they “worked Literati in dangerous conditions, overused him, and entered him in too many horse shows,” resulting in him becoming lame. It gets interesting because apparently Zooey signed a contract that stipulated she wouldn’t overwork Literati, with restrictions that included “no more than 3 jumping lessons per week.”  The lawsuit claims that when Deschanel returned the horse it was “injured and unusable,” and in need of serious medical help.  Deschanel has refused to pay Literati’s veterinarian and rehabilitation fees, according to the suit, which also alleges that Anastasia became lame under LaCagnina’s care.

It should be easy enough to prove that the Stallion is now lame, but the question is, are Deschanel and/or her horse trainer (LaCagnina) responsible?  Parker will have to prove they broke the contract and that his becoming lame wasn’t due to “natural” causes.  We’ll have to reserve judgment here until the exact details of Literati’s training and showing schedule come out, but proving negligence should be pretty straight forward.  After riding and showing Literati for a year, one would think Zooey formed a bond with him, but to be fair, that doesn’t necessarily mean she’s morally obligated to pay his vet bills (no matter how much money she’s worth).

At least Literati will get the care he needs, regardless of who ends up paying. There are plenty of horses out there who don’t.  The lesson here is don’t let someone else ride your horse!  Think twice before letting a riding school use your horse, even if it means having to pay full livery.  And for heaven’s sake, don’t lease your horse to a celebrity.  Apparently their staff (eehm Naomi Campbell) aren’t the only ones they mistreat.  Oh wait…sorry, we are reserving judgment.

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