Found this very, very interesting article on HuffingtonPost.com today. It’s all about pet custody battles and how they’re becoming more and more popular on court dockets these days. Here’s a snippet:
“According to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, attorneys have seen a 23 percent jump in pet custody cases. Harvard even has a course teaching animal law. Issues can range from visitation rights to how vet bills are split. Another consideration is how long treatment should be kept to maintain life before putting an animal to sleep. But the biggest battles are for which spouse gets custody.”
Honestly, I’m not shocked at all! If you’re anything like The Man and I and you have a dog and no kids yet, you can probably relate. We love her like she were our baby. Having grown up with four different dogs in my life, it was totally my idea/obsession to get one. Gibran wasn’t really on board for the longest, especially after we brought her home and two mornings later she pooped on his armpit as she was kissing him good morning. (Not a moment he often likes to relive!) But, as I told him he would, he soon fell for her squeaky little bark, super-waggy tail, and big black eyes. Eventually he stopped saying things like, “Your dog needs a walk or your dog ate the cable wire.” and made statements like “our dog is telling us she wants to go out” or “We can’t leave our dog home alone all day!” And so the undying love I felt for her instantly he soon begrudgingly came to share with me.
So, although I can’t imagine the dissolution of our wonderful marriage, if for some reason that day ever came (God forbid!), I’m taking my dog – you can betcha! – and he’ll probably want to fight for her, no question. We both love The Dog very much, and though my husband wouldn’t admit this easily, he’d probably go just as nuts as I would if there were no pitter patter of Karma’s little paws clicking around the house.
We would definitely be one of those couples who end up before the judge pleading our cases and praying that we win back the pooch. You may think it’s pathetic, or extreme, but I would be lying if I said I wouldn’t shell out the necessary cash needed to get full custody of Karma. She’s my little sunshine, and though she loves us both very much, if it came down to it in court I’d argue that she loves me more! I’d also present the following three arguments to support (and most likely win!) my case: 1. I bought her, picked her out, and made sure she got the best vet care and amenities at home — not him. 2. I wake up when she needs me and rush her to vets when she’s sick and schedule her shots annually to make sure she stays healthy — not him. 3. When we both call her she comes to me and when she’s sick or scared she runs to me — not him! I rest my case. The man would probably argue the following: 1. He walks her more than I do. (Full disclaimer: he doesn’t like me walking her alone in the dark.) 2. She listens to him better when it comes to discipline. 3. Who would be there to take off his socks in the evenings and kick back with him and watch ESPN.
So there you have our two cases. If you were the judge, who would you give the dog too? Or would you just laugh us right out of court?