Separating or divorcing can also impact you and your partner’s relationship with your pets. Couples often have difficulty imagining parting from their beloved animals, but that can be the harsh reality of a breakup. We advise clients on the best steps to take when they are at risk of not seeing their “fur babies” due to a breakup, or due to domestic violence issues.

Pet Care / Custody Services

Like their child custody counterparts, pet custody fights are often emotionally charged and intertwined with issues related to the breakup. In California, most jurisdictions will consider “custody” of the animal the same as any other property issue. In order to get more comprehensive orders, it is helpful to reach an agreement with your ex that covers not only visitation, but also care and expenses.

In addition to advising clients and drafting agreements, we offer to mediate disputes for clients who need a third-party to help facilitate a respectful and positive discussion about their animals’ needs and care after separation.

We have handled a variety of family law cases involving animal ownership issues, including those related to horses, cats, dogs, ferrets, birds, and exotic animals. Our practice also advises owners of livestock and breeding stock animals on the impact of their divorce on their business and/or hobby interests.