DENVER (CBS4)– More than a dozen French Bulldogs were adopted after they were rescued from horrible conditions last summer. But several of them remain in limbo at the Denver Animal Shelter, at the center of a legal dispute.

Dawn Rose is a breeder who says she left her dogs in the care of Marlene Puzack, a handler she met at a dog show. Animal protective services ended up seizing her pets.

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(credit: CBS)

Rose and at least three other owners made claims to the dogs and filed a lawsuit to try to get them back home.

“It’s been a nightmare, I mean for me as well as for my dogs… I have people that would give them forever homes,” said Rose.

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(credit: CBS)

Rose has only been able to get one returned to her so far, paying twice the adoption fee. She says the shelter performed several surgeries without her consent.

The city put them up for adoption after they were rescued in July 2017 from bad conditions at a home in Denver.

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(credit: CBS)

“I’ve submitted tons of documentation showing what I have for the dogs and pictures, AKC registration papers, and there’s now protocol on what they want to prove those dogs belong to me,” said Rose.

As long as the court battle continues, those dogs cannot be adopted out and must remain at the shelter.

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