Chicago, IL asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio

Q: My ex is trying to keep my cat. He lived with me when I adopted her, but I am on the adoption papers. What can I do?

My ex and I were on good terms after the breakup and I needed to have a home for my cat while I found an apartment. He offered to keep her at his moms house until I moved into my new place. 3 months go by and I am now moving into my place but he is refusing to give her back. My name is on the adoption papers, I was her primary caregiver when we lived together, and I am the one with my own home and with a job. He has neither of those. He didn’t even know that cats needed fresh water every day until I told him that he couldn’t let her drink the same water she had been drinking for the past 3 days. Part of the reason he left me in the first place was because he didn’t even want me to adopt the cat and bring it home. I know he is doing this to be spiteful. What can I bring to court, or tell the judge to prove that my cat belongs with me? And does it seem like I could possibly have a strong case?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Taylor P Waters
Taylor P Waters
  • Animal & Dog Law Lawyer
  • Worthington, OH
  • Licensed in Ohio

A: You can file a small claims action in your local county's municipal court and ask for the return of the cat. If you have the original adoption papers and veterinary records, you may have a good case. If you have texts/emails with him indicating the original intention to get the cat back, you may have a strong case.

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