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UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 4312
Experience:  English solicitor with over 12 years experience
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I have been looking after my son's pets a small dog and a cat

Customer Question

I have been looking after my son’s pets a small dog and a cat for about a year and a half now. My son had the cat as a kitten and he is now 8 years old. My son rescued the little dog as a puppy as she was being mistreated and the owner did not want her and he therefore also had her for 18 months in his flat, she is now coming up to 3 years old. He looked after the animals well having them micro chipped and going to dog classes with the little dog for training etc. The pets generally had a lot of attention, proper food etc. but of course, they had to be left alone during the day when my son was working.
However, my son’s flat had no garden and the cat was a “house cat” and the dog had to be taken out and walked to have exercise etc. My son then had to move and his circumstances changed and he was not able to look after them, so they came to my home in the country since when their lives changed. I have a garden and the cat enjoys his time like other cats roving outside and claiming his territory etc. The dog also as she has the garden and loves her walks in the country and so on. As I am retired she has me with her during the day.
My son moved to a much smaller flat also with no garden and now wants to re home the cat and take his dog back. I have had pets in the past but now did not really want any more as they can be a tie but I am very concerned for these pet’s welfare. They have obviously settled here and know their daily routine. The cat may be OK with a re-homing if the new home has a garden, but I am very worried that it would be cruel to take the little dog to a flat with no outdoor access where she would basically be all alone in a small room all day until my son came home. I have discussed this with my son but he is adamant he wants the dog back. Can you advise please as there may be some law about his?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  UKSolicitorJA replied 3 years ago.

I am afraid there is not much that you can do other than to hand over the animals back to your son.

He did not gift them to you and you acknowledge that they belong to him.

You may ask your son for money for the time you have looked after the animals, their upkeep etc. but if he refuses to pay you anything, then without an agreement with your son about him paying you money, there is nothing you can do I am afraid to get reimbursed financially for your efforts.

If you have any specific concerns for the welfare of the animals, you may report the matter to the RSPCA but they will not be interested unless the animals are actually being mistreated and as of now, you are merely speculating that they may be mistreated.

I am sorry that I cannot give you better news.

May I help further?