Arrangements for Dog Care Post-Divorce

Going through a divorce is a turbulent and difficult time for most people. From finding the right solicitor who deals with family law like this Gloucester solicitor Dee and Griffin, to deciding what you will do once the divorce has gone through.

Arrangements for children are also something that causes distress for many families, and something else that often causes issues is what to do with the family dog. Here are three common options for arrangements for caring for the dog post-divorce…

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The Dog Stays with one Person – In UK law a dog is classed as property, so like a car for example, it will come under the same category when assets are being divided. Although most of us tend to think of them as a member of the family rather than an object, the law doesn’t see it this way, so if there is an argument over who gets to keep the dog, certain things will be taken into account. These include the person who actually bought the dog (if it was only one person and not a joint purchase), the person who does the majority of the care for the dog on a daily basis, and the name that the dog’s microchip is in.

If one person is staying in the joint home, this may also be seen as the beneficial place for the dog to stay as the surroundings are familiar and it shouldn’t be as much of an upheaval. Of course, sometimes after divorce circumstances can change so this will need to be discussed as the person may not actually be able to provide the right care and time for the dog after the divorce.

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Split Custody – Some couples who are divorcing choose to share their dog, as they do with children. So, the dog spends some of its time at one person’s house and some at another. This is a good way to ensure that both people still get to have the dog in their lives and spend time with it but it doesn’t work for everyone, and not for all dogs either. Some dogs can become distressed by these changes in routine and spending time in different surroundings can cause them to struggle, so it is very dependant on the nature of your dog, as well as the suitability of each person’s home and lifestyle to be able to accommodate the dog and make sure that it is still being well cared for.

Re-Homing – This is something that can cause a lot of distress and heartbreak, and that very few people want to consider. Sadly however, it is something that sometimes must happen, as a decision made with the best interests of the dog in mind. Often, after divorce the lives of both people can change, and this can mean that neither are able to provide the time, care and attention that the dog needs any longer. Contacting an animal rescue association such as the Dogs Trust is the correct thing to do when this is the case, as they will be able to find a suitable new home where the dog will be happy.