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Ohio Animal / Dog Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: My girlfriend who l lived with 11 years moved out and took the dogs we bought together. can i get shared custody?

She bought a house and came into my house when I was not there and took the dogs and now will not let me see them.

Juliet Piccone
Juliet Piccone answered on Aug 11, 2021

I’m not sure if your situation falls under common law marriage (or if Ohio recognizes such) so I’d suggest you figure that out first. You may need to file for divorce and division of debt/property.

If you are not considered common law married you need to file a replevin action against...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: We found a stray dog that we have been taking care of for a week. The local shelters would not take him.

We went to the house where we suspected the dog lived twice. We were informed by the woman in the house that the dog belongs to her brother who is homeless and on drugs. She told my boyfriend to keep the dog because she couldn't take it. We have had the dog for 1 week, and the alleged owner is... Read more »

Andrew Popp
Andrew Popp answered on Aug 9, 2021

If it's his dog and wants it back, you have no right to refuse him. Dogs are treated like personal property under the law with few exceptions. If the dog is running lose, you can contact animal control if you're concerned. Otherwise, if he agrees to give you ownership you can take the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: I brought a lost dog into the dog warden and I ended up getting bit

And the volunteer that was walking that dog through the lobby part didn’t pay attention and then I filled a accident report out and then the dog warden found owner of the lost dog and gave out my personal information and showed pics of me to the owner are they allowed to do that also am I able to... Read more »

William Lehner
William Lehner answered on Jul 5, 2021

I believe you can sue the owner and maybe the organization who had a negligent volunteer. I don't know of why the warden could not show your picture.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: Our bearded dragon was taken from my ex fiance at the hospital and the shelter gave him to me do I have to give him back

She was taken to the hospital the police and hospital took the dragon and placed him in a shelter a few days later they released the bearded dragon to me and I have him registered as my esa can they take him from me or press charges

Andrew Popp
Andrew Popp answered on Jun 29, 2021

If the pet belongs to her, then you need to return it. She paid for it I presume? If you keep property that does not belong to you it is criminal theft and you can serve time in jail. Additionally, she can sue you civilly for monetary damages she incurs because of your actions.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: Is it legal for a dog warden to take an animal out of the owners fence
Matthew Williams
Matthew Williams answered on Apr 15, 2021

Under certain circumstances, yes. More information is needed to know if they could take your dog.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: I found a dog on the side of the road and knocked on doors and no one answered so I took the dog to a friend

Now my friend has her is that illegal? The owners finally contacted me and want her back but I don’t have her. What do I do?

Matthew Williams
Matthew Williams answered on Mar 6, 2021

Call your friend so they can return the dog.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Small Claims for Ohio on
Q: I was asked to petsit a guinea pig a few days. A friend of my ex roommate she really didn't even know me..

It's now been over a year and I messaged just to see if she ever intended to pick her up to which she said I can't pay you but if she's too much she could come get her she came in a ten gallon fish tank with a hide she could barely fit in.. knew nothing about guinea pigs but... Read more »

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar answered on Mar 2, 2021

Attorneys who handle animal/dog law matters would be able to advise best, but you await a response for four weeks. Although we see our animals as family members, the general premise is that they are considered property. So it could probably be argued that the other person did not expressly abandon... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: I bought a puppy from a breeder and it came with a health guarantee as long as taken to very within 72 hours.

I took him to vet within 48 and he has a double yeast ear infection and intestinal parasites. I asked the seller to refund the vet fees and they said the contract says I'm responsible for vet fees. So then I asked to return the puppy for a full refund and they stated they will take the puppy... Read more »

Hunter G. Cavell
Hunter G. Cavell answered on Feb 2, 2021

It will depend on what the contract says. You should hire an attorney to review the contract and advise you of your rights. Good luck!

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: I bought a dog from a breeder that has a genetic problem that caused me to put it down.

What kind of recourse do I have? The dog was AKC registered and only 2 years old when we put him down. We have the autopsy records that show it is a genetic defect that caused its death.

Nicole Schaefer
Nicole Schaefer answered on Jan 19, 2021

Did the breeder guarantee the dog's health or anything like that? You may have recourse but it depends on the particular facts in your situation. I would consult with an attorney.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: Can a shelter legally take ownership of a dog that has been brought to them?

My dog got out of my yard while I was at the store , he was taken to a shelter and when I called and scheduled to pick him up I was not made aware of a time limit that would give them ownership.. they then call me the day after he supposedly became their property to tell me he would be nuetered , I... Read more »

Kristina M. Bergsten
Kristina M. Bergsten answered on Nov 29, 2020

In Colorado it’s 5 days, so it’s probably something similar in Ohio. I guess they should have told you, but they’re not really required to and most laws operate under the assumption that the owner will come immediately. Maybe they’ll let you re-adopt him

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: I have two dogs that my friends are refusing to give back to me they agreed to keep them till I found a place to live
Kristina M. Bergsten
Kristina M. Bergsten answered on Nov 23, 2020

You’ll have to sue in replevin if the police won’t help you get your dog back.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law, Civil Litigation and Civil Rights for Ohio on
Q: Hi, I need help regarding on getting my dog back from ex. I bought the dog; what do I do?

I was in a relationship with my ex partner for 5 years; I bought my dog three years in. I have a receipt from the person I bought the dog from as well as I am currently fighting the bank for the statement showing I withdrew $300 the day my dog was bought. My ex currently has the dog and will not... Read more »

Joseph Jaap
Joseph Jaap answered on Nov 13, 2020

Sue in small claims court. But you might only recover the cost of the dog. Check your local court web site for the small claims process. Or use the Find a Lawyer tab to retain a local attorney to file in court to try to recover the dog.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
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... Read more »

Taylor P Waters
Taylor P Waters answered on Sep 3, 2020

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... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: My step daughters, Friends mother had contacted us to take her dog because they were moving into a new apartment.

She gave us all of the dogs items including shot records and past vet receipts, bowls, toys and even a jersey they had bought her. She wrote us the other day ( 5 months after giving her to us) stating she wants the dog back and there must of Been a misunderstanding because she wanted us to foster... Read more »

Taylor P Waters
Taylor P Waters answered on Aug 25, 2020

Her likelihood of winning is strongly based on whether she has any communications that state it was a foster situation. See if you can pull up any communications regarding the initial transaction (exchange).

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: I purchased a puppy from a breeder. We had the dog DNA tested and she is a mutt and not a breed at all. Can we get $$?

Our contract indicates she is a "Goldendoodle" but her DNA indicates she is a mix of 5 different breeds (only 36% poodle and 16% Golden). We would like to get our money back. The breeder's response was that she doesn't put much stock in DNA tests.

Taylor P Waters
Taylor P Waters answered on Aug 25, 2020

It's worth a try, what they did may have violated the Ohio Consumer Sales Protection Act, which prohibits unfair and deceptive business practices. Under the CSPA, you can get triple your damages and attorney fees.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: Is some gave us their dog, including shot records, toys, bowls etc etc Then wants the dog back 6 months later...

She claims we misunderstood and she was having us “ foster” the dog till she was able to have her again. No talk of this being temporary or “ foster” was ever said. She never compensated or even contacted us during these 6 months . Its not about the money and we just want to keep our dog!... Read more »

Taylor P Waters
Taylor P Waters answered on Aug 25, 2020

If you have the original texts/emails which show she planned to give the dog to you, you should be fine. Even if you don't, she'd have to take you to small claims court and your position seems defendable.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law and Small Claims for Ohio on
Q: What is the process for ownership of a pet bought for my daughter from a 3rd party that my ex will not let her have?

My ex- husband and I have separately and together at differing times taken care of a pet dog that was originally bought for my daughter by a friend of mine. I no longer have the receipt (although my friend might have copy of check) and pedigree forms that came with the dog when purchased. I have... Read more »

Taylor P Waters
Taylor P Waters answered on Aug 24, 2020

Yes, you can take him to small claims court. You want to allege Conversion of Property. Bring your records, try to find a copy of the check, and see if you can find any communications from him which support that the dog was purchased for or a gift for your daughter. You may want to bring it in both... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: The dog is AKC registered and microchipped in my husband’s name But state licensed and all recent vet records are in my

Name we are divorcing, I don’t want the dog but he will not take care of the dog nor sign the AKC paperwork to me do I have the right to transfer him to someone that will care for him

Taylor P Waters
Taylor P Waters answered on Aug 24, 2020

No, you should discuss the dog with your divorce attorney. He/she is marital property and should be divided/move based on the division of assets.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: Two big dogs attacked my feral cats on my windowsill last night. What non-lethal methods am I allowed to use on the dogs

I did call animal control and will try to find the owners before I do anything of course. I have also had two litters of feral kittens disappear within the past two weeks and I think these are the dogs responsible.

Taylor P Waters
Taylor P Waters answered on Aug 13, 2020

You might be able to recover the cost of the vet care for your cats. If the dogs trespass on your property, you may call the police, potentially sue the owner for trespassing, and utilize all normal measures against a trespassing person/animal. Be careful, things can sometimes escalate between... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Ohio on
Q: Can I keep my puppy if I haven’t finished paying on them?

I’m pretty sure it was a puppy mill, we had to take her to an emergency vet and ya been there for the last 3 days! She was close to dying. This lady had 6 different types of puppies in one cage she was selling. Is there a way for us to keep her due to her saying she was healthy and well( which... Read more »

Taylor P Waters
Taylor P Waters answered on Aug 13, 2020

It depends on the circumstances. From what you've said here, it does sound like you may be able to get out of paying the rest of the purchase bill and potentially recover the vet bills.

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