Generally, a dog owner has a maximum of one year to return a dog if she or he has a health or behavior problem or for any other reason — such as the dog eating or attacking people. Dogs that have serious problems, such as separation anxiety, may be subject to additional restrictions.
Can I take a dog back if I no longer need him or her?
The law does not require you to return a dog to any property that you have already lost. But generally you need to be prepared to make full arrangements for the return of any dog.
In the event that animal control authorities decide that the dog does not belong to you, you should immediately contact the local government animal shelter or animal control agency to determine what options may be available. The shelter or agency will be able to provide information you may not have thought about. You can then find contact information for the local shelter or agency.
If your dog does not live at the shelter or agency, you may still have a right to the dog’s medical and behavioral records. Contact any local vet clinic or behavioral facility for more information.
Does every dog have a right to a permanent home?
No. The law does not require that “every dog has a right to a permanent home.” Generally, a dog must have been kept in custody for six months — unless the owner was living with the dog, or the dog was a rescue dog or was kept in captivity for a particular reason.
What types of animal control services do I need?
Generally, animal control services are required when your dog has already been removed. But it’s also possible for a dog to be removed from your property before you have an event. Contact the appropriate animal control agency — for example, the county animal commission or city or county animal control department — for more information.
Can I keep a dog if I have found him/her after leaving the property?
Generally, a dog owner should take all reasonable steps to notify animal control officers. Your dog could become part of a “lost canine case” which could include all or part of the dog’s health and health care records. Please note that if you have reported a missing dog to animal control, your dog may not be permanently removed from your property. If your dog is not found and sent to an animal shelter, it will be placed with a licensed shelter with a foster parent.
What if there is no shelter for a dog?
Even if you have found your
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