Custody of the Family Pet

When a couple splits up, who gets the dog? A small claims adjudicator in Nova Scotia is advocating for a specialized court to determine custody and care for animals.

In Kemp v. Osmond, 2017 NSSM 25, Slone calls for a new court to tackle pet ownership and custody issues. “In a more perfect world there would be special laws recognizing pets as living, feeling creatures with rights to be looked after by those who best meet their needs or interests, and there would be specialized accessible courts to determine the ‘best interest of the dog,’ as there are for children in the family courts,” he said.

Quebec passed a bill recognizing animals as sentient beings and not property, and British Columbia is moving to include the best interests of animals as a factor in judicial proceedings.

Kemp v. Osmond

Lawyer’s Daily Article: Adjudicator Calls for Specialized Court

 

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