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My lost cat may be in shelter, but they won't let me look.

Q:

I lost my cat almost seven months ago when he got out during the night and never came home. I've been looking for him ever since and now I think I've found him on the animal shelter website. At least I think it's him. When I went there apparently he was in a hoard house with 70 different cats. I asked to see him but the lady refused. She didn't even give me a chance to talk. She said it was impossible to be my cat for the fact that she apparently has all the records. Now I'm no genius but I'm pretty sure that most hoarders don't keep a well organized house to know which cat is which. Let alone how many one has, in fact I'm pretty sure that they don't neuter or spayed them either, right? So my main question is this, isn't it against the law to refuse to let someone look at the animal they think is theirs? Because I'm really sure that the cat they have is mine for these reasons. The picture looks exactly like him, the age is almost close, but I know it's hard to determine the age of an animal, I know from personal experience, the time they got him was a month and 16 days after he disappeared, July 14 2016, he's natured, which I don't see a hoarder doing that's why most kittens are deformed,he has his claws, because I refuse to get them declawed, and he is also a male. What do you think?

A:

I suggest you retain an attorney in your area who may be able to intervene on your behalf. People are not required to allow individuals claiming to be looking for their lost pets in their home. If there is probable cause to believe that one�s cat is being unlawfully withheld, it is possible that a search warrant could be issued. People who believe that their animals are being wrongfully withheld can also commence a civil lawsuit (replevin action) to try to get the animal returned. However, laws generally provide that animals in a shelter must be held for a specified amount of time to give their �owners� an opportunity to redeem them. After the impoundment period is over, �owners� generally lose rights to their animals (although there have been exceptions in extenuating situations). It is unclear if a shelter transferred the cat to this person after the impoundment period or if a person surrendered the cat to her or the cat was acquired some other way. People who suspect that animals are being neglected or otherwise mistreated should also contact the police and local humane organizations/SPCAs.


Submitted by Anonymous
Answered by Elinor Molbegott

 

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