Pittsburgh, PA asked in Animal / Dog Law for Pennsylvania

Q: Can my ex come back for my dog after a year?

My ex and I had a dog together. We ended our relationship over a year ago but the dogs micro-chip is still registered under her name. I’ve always been the primary caretaker for the dog. My ex has now moved out of state to SC, since the dog is registered under her can she come take the dog back at anytime?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall
  • Norristown, PA
  • Licensed in Pennsylvania

A: Probably not. Pets are considered property under Pennsylvania law, just like a table, lamp, etc. If you've paid for the upkeep of the pet for the past year, a court will likely let you keep the pet. If she comes for the pet, you can politely decline her request. At that point, she'll have to sue you in court for the return of the pet -- and if she's already established another life in SC, it's fairly unlikely that she'll go to such lengths at this point.

Best of luck to you.

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