Can we legally take our dog back from someone we gave it to if we are questioning her current living conditions?

We gave our dog away to a man who responded to an ad we placed for her. She’s been in the family 8 years and we want to make sure she is in a good home but the new owner will not let us see her or home she is in. Do we have any legal right to get the dog back if we cannot be certain she is safe in her new home?

Asked on July 16, 2012 under Business Law, New York


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Under the laws of all states in this country, once an item is given to another person the ownership rights to the item by the giver are relinquished. As in your situation, you gave the dog away. Once given, you legally cannot take back the animal.

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