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Stealing is never acceptable
Taking away a animal from somebody can be considered stealing, because animal is viewed as property. Sometimes you need to steal a animal to protect its well-being and rights.
There are lots of examples of animal rights activist taking animals from farmers and putting them in a better home, or setting them free. They have no permission or legal right to do it, and they don't intend to return the animals. They have sometimes been taken to court, and convicted for theft.
Stealing is acceptable in case of immoral property. E.g. stealing a slave from a slave owner would be acceptable.