Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.
Se Habla Español Nous Parlons Français
Call 713-574-7952 or 888-572-6059
888-572-6059

Who gets to keep the dog in a divorce?

Until recently, judges across Texas and the United States who were presiding over divorce cases would often treat shared pets in the same manner they would other shared “assets,” such as vehicles or real estate. Increasingly, however, judges across the nation are starting to consider pets in the same way they would children, meaning they may consider the overall wellbeing of the pet before deciding with whom it will live.

According to Psychology Today, nearly 40 percent of modern divorces involve parties who are fighting over dogs, and this figure is likely to rise as more couples choose not to have children in favor of keeping pets. Until recently, though, court systems would consider factors such as the monetary value of the dog before making determinations. Now, many courts across the country are considering the “best interests of the dog” before making pet custody decisions, with California leading the charge.

Starting in January of 2019, California parties who are going through divorces may petition for sole or joint custody of the pet in a very similar manner to the way they would for a child. The new law also dictates that California courts must consider the “best interests of the dog” when issuing decisions about pet custody, which means the court may consider factors such as who is home more and who has more time to devote to the care of the pet. While, to date, California stands alone in adopting official legislation regarding pet custody, there is a very real chance that other states may soon follow suit.

This information about what happens to the family pet during divorce is educational, only, and is not a substitute for legal advice.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Client Testimonials

  1. Laura Dale the best Family Law attorney I have ever met... Posted by John...Listens, takes your calls, tells you the truth (even when it may not be what you want to hear)... Read More

  2. The Best...Posted by a Child Custody client... Laura Dale handled my international child custody and divorce matter. I am an attorney in Houston and was referred to her... Read More

  3. A Meticulous, Knowledgeable, Attorney with Heart...Posted by a Child Custody client... Laura was not the first attorney that my husband and I interviewed for an extremely complex... Read More

  4. Top Notch, Hands Down - The Best...Posted by Tammi, a Child Custody client... Laura Dale has been absolutely the best attorney I could have found for my difficult child custody... Read More

Contact Our Experienced Team Today | Se habla español | Nous parlons français

Due to the experience our lawyers have in many specialized areas, you can rely on us to put together the right team to handle your case, even if it centers on complex issues such as international family law, business valuation or bankruptcy. Contact us today to make an appointment to discuss your needs with a knowledgeable lawyer.

Login to Client Portal

Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.
1800 Saint James Place
Suite 620
Houston, TX 77056

Toll Free: 888-572-6059
Phone: 713-574-7952
Fax: 713-600-1718
Houston Law Office Map