HALIFAX -- A Halifax woman has been denied monetary damages to replace her Yorkshire terrier who died of injuries stemming from a fight with her neighbours' dog.

Adjudicator Augustus Richardson dismissed Tammy Nickerson's small claim courts case seeking $2,100 in damages -- $1,800 to replace the pooch, $200 in costs and $100 in pain and suffering -- from her neighbours, Alexandra Van Norden and Ryan Foss, following the altercation between their two pets.

Nickerson's daughter was taking the terrier, named Twig, for a walk in July when they ran into their neighbours' German shepherd, Bella, returning to their Halifax apartment building.

"The door opened. The two dogs saw each other. Ms Van Norden's evidence was that the dogs were startled and lunged at each other," Richardson wrote. "What is clear is that Bella took hold of Twig, biting down hard."

The pet owners tried to pull the dog apart, Richardson said, both humans and animals suffering scratches and bites amidst the "fracas."

"Twig got the worst of it, not surprisingly, given the discrepancy in size between the two dogs," Richardson said.

"There was no evidence at the hearing that the defendants knew or ought to have known that Bella was vicious, or that their dog had or might have any propensity to attack a person or another dog, let alone Twig."

Nickserson took Twig to the vet, but the cost of treating her was too much, Richardson wrote, and the dog was later put down.

He said Nickerson looked to replace the later Yorkie, but the $1,800 cost of a puppy was out her price range, so she found a "re-homed" dog on the internet.

Richardson found that a claimant still must prove negligence on the part of the German shepherd's owner, but because there was no such evidence presented to him, he was forced to dismiss the claim.