‘Pet nups’: Why pets are more than property

Who keeps Rover if your relationship goes to the dogs?

12 Feb 2016 By Josh Thomas Comments

While purely an accessory to some, pets more often than not become a crucial part of a person’s life. From the responsibilities they endow upon an owner, to the love and affection they give in return, pets are family and not property to most pet parents.

The law however still deems pets as property, making ‘pet nups’ an increasing necessity for modern day relationships where a furry friend is third wheeling. ‘Pet nups' like prenuptial agreements, are the notion of retaining all your property, in this case a pet, regardless if and how a relationship ends. This retention of property although legally sound isn’t quite as applicable to our conscious animal pals who are often left just as heart-broken at the conclusion of a relationship.

According to the Law Society, one-in-four divorces involve a dispute over pets, so they say drawing up a pre-nuptial agreement, which outlines who will take care of the pet and associated costs is important these days.

Unlike a TV or couch, a dog or cat may develop more affection for one particular spouse regardless of actual ownership. This means when it comes to a break-up a pet, although owned by one partner, may feel like they belong with the other. In a world where people are working crazy hours, the idea of a pet going where it feels most loved and not to the person that owns it is an important factor to consider when a relationship ends—a consideration that should really start right at the beginning of a relationship with the decision of whether or not to get a 'pet nup'.

The dog’s mine!

UK pet charity Blue Cross has revealed that pets are often brought to its re-homing centres following a break-up—sometimes without the knowledge of the other partner! Thus a pet nup gives you reassurance that your fur baby will be in good hands if your relationship should go to the dogs.

Like children in the case of divorce, our pets deserve to have their feelings considered when a relationship ends, so think long and hard before classing them as property via a pet nup; it may just save three hearts from breaking.

If you think a pet nup might be for you, you can download a Pet Nup Deed of Agreement from Blue Cross and further develop it with a legal expert in Australia.

12 Feb 2016 By Josh Thomas Comments

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