Who gets the dog?
Ownership disputes are becoming increasingly common.  

You’re separating, or are in the process of separating from a partner and the awful decision arises – who gets the dog? You both want to keep your beloved pet. Tensions are high, arguments follow and you simple can’t resolve the situation.

For couples with no clear answer to a dog custody battle, there is often uncertainty as to who to go to or how to resolve the matter.


    Dog custody laws in the UK see dogs as “chattel” or inanimate objects, in the same way they do as cars, houses or other personal items. As a firm of dog lovers we totally understand the importance of dogs within a family unit and appreciate that for couples who have raised their dog together, both feel a bond and closeness with their dog.

    We provide consultation to couples wishing to resolve the matter outside of courts and we can represent parties in court during dog custody cases.

    In Court, a dog custody case will involve determining who the primary owner of the dog is. In a Small Claims Court, the District Judge holds power to decide who the sole owner of the dog is and can rule that person as the primary owner of the dog. Courts can also rule for joint custody of the dog, depending on the circumstances between the couple.

    When deciding who gets custody of the dog, judges will often look for evidence of:

    • Who first purchased the dog
    • Who has registered the dog at the vet and microchip database
    • Who usually walks and takes care of the dog
    • Who pays for the expenses of the dog.

    Contact us for guidance and a no obligation initial appointment on 01792 468684 or email


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