Trying to move forward when your marriage is ending is hard enough, but when the split means fighting over your precious pets, it’s more than some couples can deal with. But custody disputes over beloved cats and dogs have become so common in divorces that “pet-nups” - a kind of prenuptial agreement that details what happens to the pet if the couple breaks up - are on the rise.
It’s such a growing trend that a recent survey from the U.K. finds that around a quarter of divorces there in the past year actually involved a pet custody dispute. The survey, which included 2,000 pet owners and 100 lawyers, reveals that divorce lawyers in cases involving pets spend an average of 25 billable hours on just that one issue.
The pet custody conflict issue and pet-nups are on the rise here in the U.S. as well. Celeb divorce lawyer Robert Wallack says they’re also seeing more issues surrounding pets included more frequently in regular prenups these days. And for couples who consider their furry friends to be their kids, the “pet-nup” can be a good solution, since the pets are just personal property in the eyes of the law. So having an agreement in place about what happens to their pet if they break up saves couples having to fight it out over Fido later on