I adopted my dog, about 4 years ago from a shelter in New York with my ex fiancé. He recently abandoned us, and has not cared about the dog or his well-being. The dog has always lived with me and my other rescued dog. They get along so well and can't live without each other. When we initially him, we adopted him under my ex fiancée's name, because I was not 21 yet. I am now over 21 and totally capable of taking care of my dogs and would like full custody. What do I have to do?
Ownership records cannot be changed without the consent of the adopter of record. However, if a pet custody case is litigated, it is very likely that a court would consider more than just who adopted an animal. Courts would likely consider what transpired after adoption, including, for example, whether the animal was given away, sold, or abandoned, who has been the animal’s primary caretaker and paid for the animal’s care (such as food, veterinary expenses, grooming, etc.).
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