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Services for Professionals: Legal Consulting


Drs. Suzanne Hetts and Daniel Estep offer consultations to attorneys, prosecutors and judges, and expert witness testimony in cases where the behavior of dogs, cats and other animals is at issue. They have worked with attorneys and their clients for over 25 years in Colorado and other states, assisting with criminal as well as civil actions. Most of these cases have involved injuries caused by dogs and cats. Dr. Estep has also consulted on a few cases involving horse behavior.

What Drs. Hetts and Estep Can Do For You

  • Provide help in formulating questions to be asked of witnesses and owners of animals about the behavior of the animal in question.
  • Provide expert witness testimony about the behavioral tendencies and motivations for the behavior of specific animals.
  • Perform a behavioral evaluation or assessment of the animal in question.
  • Formulate an opinion about the aggressive nature of an animal, whether or not the owners knew or should have known about the animal’s nature and whether or not an injury was foreseeable.

What We Cannot Do

  • Drs. Hetts and Estep cannot make statements or testify that any specific breed of dog or cat is inherently dangerous, vicious or aggressive.

Our Qualifications


Vita of Dr. Hetts
Summary of Recent Testimony of Dr. Hetts

Vita of Dr. Estep
Summary of Legal Cases of Dr. Estep
  • Dr. Hetts has a PhD in Zoology with a specialization in animal behavior from Colorado State University.
  • Dr. Estep has a PhD in Psychology with a specialization in animal behavior from The University of Florida.
  • Both doctors are certified by the Animal Behavior Society as Applied Animal Behaviorists.
  • Dr. Hetts has practiced as an Applied Animal Behavior Consultant for over 25 years. Dr. Estep taught animal behavior to college undergraduates, graduate and professional students for over 15 years and has practiced as an Applied Animal Behavior Consultant for over 25 years.
  • Both doctors have been well published in scholarly journals, books and professional articles.
  • Both doctors have extensive experience in evaluating the behavior of dogs, cats and certain other species of animals.

Statement of Legal Fees in 2018

We charge $375/hour for time spent in activities relevant to the case which includes but is not limited to reviewing reports, and other materials, performing evaluations, researching the scientific literature, conducting interviews, or meeting with clients or attorneys. If deposed, we charge $625/hour. If called to testify in court, we charge $725/hour for time spent testifying and $300/hour for time spent waiting to testify. Travel time is charged at $125/hour with a per day maximum of $1000 (not including services rendered). Expenses are charged as they are incurred. Email us at Info(AT)AnimalBehaviorAssociates.com for more information.

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