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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71041
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I have received an email saying two dogs we were going adopt

Customer Question

I have received an email saying two dogs we were going adopt from a private seller have been rehomed elsewhere, we had been in contact and seen the dogs twice since the beginning of February. Since they were pups the dogs (now 4 yrs old) they have been living in an outside kennel, so at the end of February we agreed to purchased a kennel but it meant we had to raise some money. We visited the dogs on the 8th March and agreed to have a kennel by the end of April.
I opted to invest in a top kennel (£1370) making a deposist payment of £685 (30th March), with expected construction and delivery to take 3-4 weeks. I emailed the seller (3rd April) about the time it could take and suggested collection of the dogs no later than 18th April, even if the kennel wasn't ready, as they were going on holiday on the 25th. I didn't hear anything and emailed on the 18th to say kennel not ready but hoped it would be here this week but we could still take them but to temporarily keep their access to one room, I even sent a copy of my payment to prove a kennel was purchased. But today I've been told they have infact rehomed them on a friends farm, so now we are left with a £1370 kennel yet to arrive or fully pay for but no dogs the kennel was meant for. I feel we have been treated badly and also left in a financially difficult position.
Andrew L
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
what would you like to know about this please?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Jo,

I realise now we have probably lost the dogs and I know you can't put a price on the emotional affects, especially my depression but I feel we made a financial commitment of £1370 and were in an agreement that the dogs were reserved until the kennel had arrived. This money was only spent to secure these dogs and to show our commitment, I could of purchased a cheap kennel and already had the dogs but I wanted to provide the best and because of this it has taken extra time and I feel I have been penalised. I would like to know if there is anyway I can recover this money from the owners. Please see below for email received from owners today.

Hi Andy,

For the past few weeks Graham and I have been a bit worried about whether the dogs will adapt to living indoors and within a town environment. We have also been worried about the fact that you do not yet have a kennel although I do understand that you have been trying to get one.

Last week I was approached by an old friend who lives on a farm who was looking for a pair of springers and after much consideration we feel that this would actually offer Flute and Lilly the best possible home.

We do not doubt you would have given them a great life however we think that having free access to run around and explore is what will be best for their bouncy nature and personalities.

I appreciate your commitment to them and hope that you can understand our decision. It was not our intention to mess you around however we ultimately needed to make the right decision for the dogs.


Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you.
I'm really sorry and I know how important dogs are but you have no claim at all.
Clearly, if they agreed to sell these dogs to you then they are in breach of contract but is you only have a claim for the sum of your loss directly attributable to their breach. That would be any amount that you had paid for them or possibly things like travelling costs.
Mourners happened here is that you have made a purchase in the expectation that you will have these dogs and that is not something sufficiently close to their breach to be reclaimable in the law.
The other alternative is to try to seek specific performance of the contract forcing them to hand over these dogs but it is usually fruitless. Although dogs are unique enough to be the subject of the contract requiring specific performance, by the time you got this into court they would have rehomed them and so it would be impossible to enforce.
I'm very sorry but that is the reality of your position.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Jo,

Thank you for your quick response but obviously I am disappointed I can't do anything to recover my outlay and feel that during this whole process I was the only one taking a risk, clearly a foolish one. So despite the kennel being part of the agreement they can do whatever they want without any consequences and simply leave us with a financial burden. This has also left my mental heath at risk, for which may simply deteriorate. Anyway I have copied below the email correspondence about choosing us.

Thank you again,

Andy L

Hi Hilary,

We have undertaken a lot of thought and consideration, especially whether we're ready to take on any more dogs, being that we should of been celebrating the first year with our previous Springers. And after much deliberation I can clearly update you on our position, which is that yes we are ready and very committed to offering a good home to two more dogs.

Any fears or worries we may have had were easily overcome by meeting the both of you and seeing your beautiful, healthy & very well trained Springers but now my only worry is whether we can convince you we're the right people for Flute & Lily.

Over the past two days I have researched and seen hundreds of kennels & runs, making a shortlist of about 40 within a price range of around £250-£600. Obviously we wouldn't have a run as big as yours but I'd want the kennel section to be very similar and would be very grateful to know the size of your kennel section. Although in the long term I want to introduce them to the house I am very committed to purchasing a suitable kennel & run, I would hope to make a choice and place an order when I get paid on Thursday, I've come round to the benefits of an outdoor kennel.

I realise I might not of seemed enthusiastic but I am very different in a familiar environment, where I have no fear of being watched and can interact with the dogs naturally. I can see they need plenty of exercise and It certainly does not concern me how dirty they get, as I work outdoors and I'm always caked in mud. Also it is clear being such intelligent dogs they deserve lots of attention and stimulation.

I really hope you will both see our commitment and we would feel very lucky to be given the chance to provide a home to Flute & Lily.

All the best,


Hi Andy,

Thank you for getting back to us, it was lovely yo meet you both at the weekend. Graham and I have discussed your email and we think you would be able to offer a great home to flute and Lily.

I think it will initially be quite a change for them but I feel that you will be committed to working with them to adapt to their new home.

I will measure the kennel size and let you know.

If you would like to come down again at the weekend or mon/tues with your mum to get to know them more and take them for a walk that would ok.

I hope this is good news for you both. I know that Graham and I will miss them but I think this is in the best interests of the dogs.

Many thanks

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
There is no way of recovering the cost of the kennel I'm afraid.
It is just plain too remote from the breach