How to get pet custody after a breakup

Who gets custody of a pet after a breakup?

So who gets custody of a pet after a breakup? Do you think you’d let your boyfriend visit the shared pet if you broke up? If you said yes, then you agreed with 78% of exotic pet owners who were asked how they’d respond in one such hypothetical situation.

It turns out, however, that when a breakup is not hypothetical but very real, reactions change dramatically. The same question posed to former partners only got 21% of the answers.

How to get pet custody after a breakup Photo: www. macpixel. net-Large-Cute-Kitten-Cat-Cat-Ears-Isolated-4069259

ExoticDirect asked these two questions in two separate surveys with a total of 500 people. The goal was to understand how couples cope with having pets when they separate.

And when they are related, these two surveys suggest that most couples underestimate the impact a breakup would have on them, overestimate how polite a breakup would be, and don’t consider the possibility that their partner has different preferences than theirs.

Sadly, this often leads to one person’s relationship with the pet disintegrating or becoming severed altogether. Which raises the question of whether having a pet with a partner is a good idea?

It’s true that having pets together can be a great precursor to parenthood and can even strengthen your relationship.

In fact, having a pet together turned out to be a better indicator that the couple were together rather than having a baby together, according to a 2013 US study.

Questo perché avere un bambino può spesso essere considerato un "obbligo limitato" caratterizzato da un senso morale del dovere, mentre un animale domestico indica "impegno impegnato" che è il segno distintivo di relazioni sentimentali stabili – dove entrambi i partner non hanno motivi diversi per stare con l’un l’altro che perché lo vogliono.

However, for couples who have failed to train, in addition to all the other complicated decisions that need to be made during separation, they also face the question of who will keep the pet.

And while one of the main factors couples consider is who bought the pet, according to our surveys, 59% of couples get their pets together in cohabitation.

In addition to the shared income that many long-term partners have, this can make determining the “rightful” owner a contentious affair. And if a decision can’t be reached, the pet might have to be rehomed as 10% of owners in our survey said they have done or would do after a breakup.

The good news is that for couples who break up on good terms, it may be possible to share a pet. In fact, that’s what 7% of our survey respondents reported they did after they broke up with their partner.

However, caution is advised. Some animals, such as rabbits, do not fare well when split between two houses, and others, such as snakes and lizards, which need a carefully regulated environment to thrive, need bulky items such as nurseries and all related equipment. It would be very difficult to transport without significant disturbance to their habitat.

Many animals need a stable living environment to thrive, which means that allowing the animal to live with an owner and allowing its former partner to visit may be the best thing to do, thus reducing the emotional pain experienced by both animal than from the animal. former partner.

But judging by 34% of owners who said they didn’t allow their ex to visit their pet and 45% who said their ex didn’t want to visit their pet, that’s easier said than done. get yourself.

More often than not if an ex doesn’t get to see the pet it is because the relationship didn’t end well. In such situations, the relationship has usually broken down to such an extent that at least one, if not both, ex-partners refuse to see each other.

More trivial reasons are that a partner has moved too far or is not interested in the animal.

But either way, the reality of breaking up and deciding who gets a pet turns out to be very different from people’s expectations, meaning you may need to think about picking up a pet before doing so.

Not only can this make the breakup messier, but it can also keep you in an unhappy relationship longer, according to a 2017 study.

So, should you bring your pet with you, and if so, is the time right? There’s no definitive answer and as much as we like to think we know how we’d react until it actually happens, we never really do.

Breaking up with a pet, whether for two months or several years, is a very individual matter.

“Who gets custody of a pet after a breakup?”

Guest Writer: Irina M. Wells,writing for ExoticDirect Animal Insurance.

ExoticDirect offers pet insurance for large and small birds, lizards, turtles, small and exotic mammals and birds of prey. You can get a quote here. Insurance coverage is only available in the UK.

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How to get pet custody after a breakup


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Blue Cross Pet Nup: The pet equivalent of a prenup, but with pet welfare at the center

While many couples have agreements in place to protect their possessions, we are encouraging pet owners to think about their beloved pets.

Signing up for this specially crafted document to plan for your pets’ future can help you avoid pain if your relationship ends.

We have partnered with divorce lawyers Lloyd Platt & Company in an attempt to stop the numbers of pets getting caught up in marital disputes around the country, and to lessen the stress and heartache for owners and pets alike.

Download the Blue Pet Nup cross for free

The free Pet Nup document, which can be downloaded below and was developed in collaboration with divorce legal experts, establishes ownership rights in the event of a divorce or relationship breakdown and covers ongoing pet care.

There are some parts of the deal that a court will not enforce, such as lifestyle choices like who takes the dog on vacation or how the cat should be treated, but deciding these details between you could still help clear the conflict out of a difficult situation. and emotional breakup.

Recent research from the Blue Cross shows:

  • Four pets are admitted to the Blue Cross weekly after the relationship has broken down
  • Dogs and cats are the most contested pets, followed by horses, rabbits and guinea pigs
  • When Brits separate, it is usually (56%) the wife or girlfriend who keeps the animal, while just under a third of men (29%) retain full ownership
  • For those who couldn’t decide who should keep the pet, 15% decided to gift it to a family friend, 12% to family members, and 6% to pet charities like Blue Cross

We’ve also created a much simpler Deed of Agreement document that dictates who will take ownership in the event of a breakdown, without as many details as a full Pet Nup.

by Nicole Pajer

Breakdowns inevitably involve the distribution of material goods: taking what one originally entered into a relationship with and sharing objects such as sofas and coffee tables. But what happens when you have a dog together? Figuring out what to do with the dog you own with your ex can be a difficult and emotional battle. While it’s easy to say that you’d like to take Fido yourself, it’s best to keep the dog’s interest in mind when deciding its post-breakup fate.

Just like when it comes to children in a divorce or breakup, there are three typical scenarios that former couples with a shared dog can explore:

1. You shared the care

“My ex and I have been cared for together for 2 years. It works really well and we’ve worked it out so one of us has the dog for a week and then we switch for the next week.” – Lisa Chang

2. You take care of the other person

“When Josh and I split, I had to move somewhere where I couldn’t have a dog. The lawyer asked if I wanted visitation rights in the divorce papers, however, I was moving and starting a very demanding job and wouldn’t have the proper time to devote to spending time with Duncan. I thought it would be too difficult for him to only appear sporadically in his life. I gave Josh my full custody. It was difficult for Duncan at first, but in the long run I was consoled to know that he was able to be with the parent who had more time for him. “- Hilary Parker

3. One of the owners takes over, but grants access rights to the other

“Emily took Charlie when we broke up. It was difficult to return it, but we fixed this so that you could continue visiting him. I go pick him up and take him to the park every now and then and even though I’m not around much anymore, he’s still always happy to see me.” – Bob Browne

After weighing your options, how do you decide which scenario works best for you? Although many of these decisions are resolved in court, The Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) recommends resolving it amicably with your ex taking lifestyle factors into consideration. Before deciding who will keep the dog and how you will handle custody, consider:

Separating is never easy, especially when a beloved pet is involved. Whether or not you and your ex decide to share custody, give the dog to solely one of you, or draw up visitation rights, make sure that you have your dog’s best interest at heart.

How did you manage your dog’s care after your relationship ended? Let us know in the comments section below.

  • Who is moving into a new home? A breakup can be stressful enough for a pet without having to move to a new environment.
  • If the pet belonged to one of the owners prior to entering the relationship, the couple should consider entrusting that person with custody as the dog may be more fond of them.
  • Who has the most time to properly care for their dog? It’s only fair that your beloved pet is able to spend time with the owner that has enough flexibility in their schedule to exercise and spend time with it.
  • Do you have children who are attached to the dog? If so, it may be best to have the dog live with the parent that the children will be living with.
  • Do you have more than one dog? While an obvious solution may be for each person in the relationship to take one of the dogs, it’s important to assess how attached the dogs are to one another. Separating them can put more emotional stress than you think.
  • If you are considering co-parenting, is it possible to mature a situation of shared custody? It may sound like a good idea but it only really works when you’re able to put aside your differences for the sake of your dog. Eventually you will need to see each other when moving your dog between houses.

Florida Pit Bull Regulations

Pets are valued members of many families, who love and appreciate them as much as their human members. Although pet custody laws are designed to resolve pet ownership disputes, they generally view pets as ownership and regulations vary widely from state to state.

Custody battles with local law enforcement

Pet care and inspection workers can confiscate pets accused of aggressive behavior or attacking a person. Depending on the state in which the alleged attack occurred, the accused animal can be quarantined for a certain period of time to check for signs of anger or it can be sentenced to euthanasia. Parents of seized pets should check local ordinances to determine the best course of action for regaining custody of their beloved pet.

Private custody battles

In recent history, disputes between private individuals over the care of pets are becoming more and more frequent. The most frequent disputes of this type occur between romantic couples who have separated but cannot reach an amicable agreement on who gets custody of the family pet. To the dismay of worshiping pet parents, most state animal laws do not consider pets other than other personal possessions, such as a lamp or dresser, and few take the pet’s best interests into consideration when sharing property.

Third Party Care Battles

Third party pet keeping disputes arise when someone wants to take or keep an animal that is formally owned by someone other than the former partner. Typically, this type of dispute involves allegations of abuse or neglect by a third party from which the third party wants to protect the animal. Pet custody laws typically give preference to the owner of the record in third party custody disputes, but if abuse or neglect can be proven, the third party can sometimes successfully gain ownership of the pet working with local animal care and control officers or filing a civil or criminal lawsuit against the original owner.

Conventions for the care of animals

A pet care contract is your best defense against future pet care conflicts. Individuals intending to purchase or adopt a pet that will be shared with another person can protect the pet’s best interests by entering into an agreement detailing how pet care responsibilities will be divided and anticipates how those responsibilities will be affected. in case of rupture or separation between human custodians. Conventions for the care of animals domowymi powinny być jak najbardziej szczegółowe, a podpisana kopia powinna być przechowywana przez każdą zaangażowaną stronę. While a pet care agreement may not completely prevent future litigation and could be overruled by a court ruling, pre-existing agreements are given considerable weight in the legal arena and could significantly reduce conflicts during a litigation.


In pet custody legal disputes, preference is often given to the person who feeds, bathes and pays the veterinary fees for the family pet even if the pet is officially registered in the other party’s name .

As many victims will often remain in danger to protect the family pet from the abuser, some states have enacted legislation that includes pets in domestic violence restraining orders and requires local animal control officers to bring the pet. domestic in a shelter when the victim is taken to a safe home.

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Conflicts for a pet can be just as important to divorced spouses as any other problem when both spouses have established a special bond with a pet and wish to keep it. This feeling can be even greater when the couple has no children and the dog or cat has taken on the role of the couple’s “child”. But unlike real children, for whom there is extensive case law and state measures, pets have been largely ignored as a key concern in a divorce.

by Tim Clarke
updated October 26, 2018 4 min read

If two Wisconsin lawmakers get what they want, the world of visiting rights for divorced spouses could soon expand to include hairier items than babies. The new rules would give divergent couples the opportunity to share pet ownership in a way that gives both of them a chance to see their pet. Complete with provisions for custody, visits, and even pet maintenance payments, the new bill is the first in the nation to try to address a relatively rare, but nonetheless controversial, issue that divorcing couples may have to face. face up to.

Conflicts for a pet can be just as important to divorced spouses as any other problem when both spouses have established a special bond with a pet and wish to keep it. This feeling can be even greater when the couple has no children and the dog or cat has taken on the role of the couple’s “child”. But unlike real children, for whom there is extensive case law and state measures, pets have been largely ignored as a key concern in a divorce.

Pets as a property?

Treating a pet as personal property and assigning property rights in accordance with state marriage law has been an established rule of law. However, most lounge chairs don’t bark or meow and certainly don’t provide the same companionship and intangible positive qualities that a pet can offer. This discrepancy has led to conflicting pet treatment in divorce cases.

Most states have refused to enforce visitation agreements because there is simply no precedent for them. In fact, a Pennsylvania court even compared a couple’s pet custody program to a “visitation program” for a piece of furniture. Furthermore, inviting courts to rule more thoroughly on these issues could be seen as an unnecessary drain on judicial resources. At least one court has indicated that the system is only overwhelmed by problems with child custody, visits and support.

Keeping your pet’s welfare in mind

However, more and more judgments appear. Judges in both Texas and Alaska have established visiting hours for former spouses. Indeed, some of these judges rely on a “best interests of the animal” system to decide on custody and visiting rights, although it is often complicated without access to the animal’s real wishes.

Yet, in some cases, the courts are committedin factotherwisede jureanalisi del "miglior interesse" nel concedere la proprietà a quella che considera una casa migliore per l’animale.

In the absence of a clear indication of individual ownership, they have some leeway to consider who is the most skilled keeper for the animal. If children are also involved in the case, a judge usually keeps the children and the pet in the same household. Although the losing spouse may be fairly compensated for the property division, this often does not reflect the sentimental value the animal had for its former guardian.

Imperfect law may involve taking extreme measures by one or both spouses. Some couples spend large sums of money to fight the property problem. In a demonstration of this, a San Diego divorcee spent more than two years arguing over the custody of the couple’s “Gigi” dog. Among other efforts, he enlisted an animal behavior expert, commissioned a study on “canine bonding” and created a video documenting a day in Gigi’s life. While he ultimately prevailed over the matter, his attorney fees would have exceeded $ 140,000 by the end of the trial.

Space theft

Pets can also unintentionally fall victim to the vengeful nature of the divorce process and become just another battle to win. This can lead to fights, petnapping, and sometimes worse. The Oregon woman escaped from prison only after an appeals court ruled that her failure to return her husband’s pet walabi was the result of the wallaby’s accidental escape, not a deliberate attempt to hide Skippy. Another Texas woman was less fortunate and was sentenced to 30 days in jail after hiding two cats and swearing where they were to keep their ex-husband away.

Fido’s future

State legislation, such as that of Wisconsin, can change the way courts view these issues and give judges and spouses unparalleled discretion in deciding what happens to a pet after a divorce. While the problem remains relatively rare, the growing awareness of animal-related issues in the law could result in a proliferation of these cases in the future.

Even in the absence of judicial enforcement, a visiting schedule can serve as a valid compromise in friendlier divorce cases and provide a better solution for spouses than monetary compensation. But without legal legitimacy, the possibility of messy problems in the future makes it a far from ideal solution. As changes to the status of animals in other parts of the law become more common, the likelihood of an extension of the divorce law increases dramatically. The more courts begin to view pets as something beyond the property items, the more willing they will be to allow couples to create and enforce custody plans.

The pet custody fight has stalled many divorce negotiations. After all, pets are more than just assets to be shared in the settlement agreement. They often hold a special place in their owners’ hearts, and the thought of not being able to interact with them on a daily basis can cause a lot of distress.

If you find yourself in a custody dispute for your pets, the following article can shed some light on your rights and how best to handle the situation.

Animal care

Custody of children is a very controversial issue in many divorces, but many divorces also involve a heated debate over the custody of furry little babies. Pets are like babies to many people, and the thought of no longer living or seeing their beloved dog or cat (or other animal) can be very depressing.

Understand the law

How to get pet custody after a breakup

If you find yourself in a situation where custody of your pet is an issue, the first thing you need to do is understand what the law is. In nearly all states, pets are simply property. They have no special status under the law and are not seen as children (although there is a growing movement to change it). They are simply subject to divorce. That said, there are more and more cases emerging where judges allow special testimony about the pet and issue rulings involving “visiting” the pet.

How Animal care Is Decided

When a court takes the time to consider how to share time with a pet, the judge will be interested in the following factors:

    Who took care of the animal (fed it, treated it, took it for a walk and took it to the vet)

Who spent the most time with the pet

Testimony of the veterinarian as to who brought the pet in most often

Information about how well the pet was cared for

  • Facts about where the parties will live after divorce and who is best equipped to care for a pet and provide a good environment
  • Another important factor is whether there are children. When children are involved, the animal almost always stays indoors with children due to their attachment to the animal. Divorce itself is traumatic enough for a child, but the fact that the family pet is taken away from the main residence is also another blow no child faces.

    Creating a pet parenting plan

    Because there is no way to know how a court will react to your pet custody dispute (some courts will not have time for such an argument and will treat the pet as personal property), if you and your ex can process a plan by sharing time with the animal, you will be able to create a deal that will work for both of you and allow everyone to continue to maintain a relationship with the animal.

    Some things to consider include:

      Your schedules. Try to maximize human-animal contact. Sitting alone in a crate is no fun.

    Maintain a regular schedule so that everyone can easily adjust to it.

    Expect accidents and nervousness. If your pet will be staying with you in a new home, there will be an adjustment. Be patient.

    Write out your plan so there can be no confusion.

  • Be flexible. If your pet is unhappy, you will need to make changes.
  • Funding for animals

    Some couples reach an agreement (or go to court for a decision) on the cost of the pet. Probably the biggest expense is the vet’s expense, but grooming, food, dog walks, and training lessons can also be priced expensive.

    If you’re sharing time with your pet, it makes sense to find a way to share expenses. Consider dividing your expenses the same way you divide your time. If you have a 50/50 time split, a 50/50 split for expenses makes sense. A time split of 20/80 would indicate a spending split of 20/80.

    How to get pet custody after a breakup

    Establishing pet care and ensuring constant contact can help alleviate some of the bitterness people feel after a divorce. It’s not an easy journey, but the following articles can help you solve some of the problems you may encounter.

    If you are planning on getting a pet with your partner (SO), you better be serious about your relationship.

    While in theory it may sound like a great idea – and we’ve all heard from former couples that it works miraculously well – sharing a pet after a breakup isn’t all it seems, especially if feelings linger on either side.

    How to get pet custody after a breakupBreakups are hopeless for the best of us; saying goodbye to a pet only makes a broken heart worse. I see. But sharing it usually (keyword: usually) never succeeds, at least not in the long term. Of course, in the first few months after the breakup, it can make sense to carry an animal back and forth or arrange visits to slow the burn for both you and the animal. However, a commitment to sustainable shared care is not sustainable.

    It means that the lines of communication between the two former lovers are kept open, potentially for a good decade. While it may seem simple if the two of you are currently friends, consider the impact it may have on future situations, including new relationships. Pictures on social media of an ex’s new SO with your dog or cat can be hard to stomach. Not to mention, he or she may not feel exactly thrilled by the situation. Another problem is that, if a person still has feelings – and ones that are difficult to overcome thanks to constant contact – she may take the opportunity to see the animal more than she should as an excuse to see her former partner. . And if the other person doesn’t entertain this, the animal may be used against them. That’s when things get ugly.

    A specific case: an ex-boyfriend who was married for several years before meeting me and recently separated. By the time we met, she was grieving her separation from her beloved rescue dog more than it was the end of her relationship. And I’ve seen the bad and the ugly come out when a pet shows up in the middle of a dramatic rift. The problem was that she would hold the dog over her head when she felt particularly despised, lonely, or angry with him. In every emotionally charged email, she would inevitably mention how she “abandoned” the “poor” dog, knowing that the beloved pet was a particular sore point for him. Yet, she used the dog to make him feel like garbage, even going so far as to send him a sad Father’s Day email – almost a year after their breakup – that was written: “from the dog.” And no, there was nothing nice about it.

    The reality is that he made the best decision for the dog to give it to him. After all, it’s probably not a good idea to come in and out of an animal’s life, especially a rescue dog that has already been through a lot and could be overcoming abandonment issues. “It was really hard to say goodbye to my dog ​​when I ended my last relationship, but I knew it was in the dog’s best long-term interest,” said Sarah, 33, of Toronto. “Sporadic visits would only confuse him, and I knew sharing ‘custody’ wouldn’t work once we both fully moved on with our lives.”

    How to get pet custody after a breakupThe breakdown of some relationships can be so destructive and dramatic that the only solution is to break up; meaning, no communication. Of course, this situation usually leaves the pet’s sharing off the table. Sometimes, the hardest choice is who will keep the animal.

    If you’re not sure who should take the dog, there are a few things to consider. First of all, who is the one who leaves the house? It might make sense to keep your pet where he is. Of course, lifestyles also come into play and ideally the pet should go to the person who has the most time and best resources to care for the pet. Remember, caring for a dog alone is a completely different story than sharing one – and all of the responsibilities – with your SO.

    At the end of the day, the mature (but not always the easiest) thing to do is put the animal in front of any lingering animosity, anger, and pain between you two. After all, they have done nothing to contribute to your newfound “single” status.

    How to get pet custody after a breakup

    Posted by heritagelawoffices on April 3, 2020 in Blog, Divorce Law

    It’s hard nowadays to find someone who doesn’t consider their pet a member of the family. But what happens to pets when a couple gets divorced or divorced? While there is no specific legislation currently dealing with the concept of pet care, there is an emerging trend where people take their partner to court for their family pet. Read on to learn more about pet care and how pets get divided in a separation or divorce.

    A pet is considered possession

    According to current legislation, animals are considered “owners” and, therefore, are considered assets. Since animals are viewed by law as goods, there is really no “custody” of a pet. You can only have custody of a sentient being (like a child, for example). When it comes to the division of family property in a divorce or separation, it’s usually split evenly between the couple – which begs the question,“how do we split our dog?”.

    How are animals divided?

    While there is still no legislation regarding the division of pets, courts are becoming increasingly aware that many people view their pets as more than just goods and take this into account when ruling.

    If a pet was brought into a relationship prior to marriage, it can be considered foreclosed property and will remain with the party who first purchased the pet. Se un animale domestico è stato acquistato dopo il matrimonio, ci sono un paio in factri che potrebbero essere presi in considerazione dal tribunale, come ad esempio:

    • Who took care of the animal during the relationship?
    • Who is the sole owner (who actually bought the pet, whose name is on the city pet license, etc.)

    The simplest and most common way pets are split up in a divorce or separation is through a written agreement between the couple. The couple can come up with a deal that will satisfy both of them and could include as much detail or as little as they want. These agreements usually include things like visiting hours and cost-sharing policies.

    If you are looking to outline a pet settlement for your divorce or separation, contact the Heritage Law team. Our experienced family lawyers will ensure that you and your partner make a mutually satisfying decision.