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Whether you adopt a companion animal before or during marriage, or in the course of a relationship with a domestic partner, roommate, or significant other, you may encounter the terrible conflict of negotiating visitation, financial support, and the primary residence in the event the relationship ends angrily.

Protect yourself through a pre-nuptial addendum, separation or divorce decree. If you have already lost possession or are fighting to keep possession, contact an animal law attorney to help reunite you with your nonhuman companion through visitation, custodial exhanges, or permanent custody.

Mr. Karp estimates having evaluated and/or handled over 500 such cases, whether involving lost-found disputes, liens and foreclosures, replevin, or contractual enforcement, including one highly publicized case involving a nonprofit rescue organization caring for dogs seized by law enforcement due to suspected animal cruelty and defending the organization (and dogs) against the criminal defendant’s efforts to restore the dogs to her possession.


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DISCLAIMER: By accessing this site,  you agree to hold the law office of Adam P. Karp harmless and assume any risk  that the linked information might be outdated or dead. You are encouraged to  contact the clerk or code reviser of the municipality in which you are searching  for the most current animal laws. The links below will take you to the nearest  general webpage for the requested information. You may need to drill down by  clicking one or more successive hotlinks until you reach the pertinent code  titles and chapters. Key search terms for locating the appropriate code include  “Animal,”  “Cruelty,”  “(Potentially) Dangerous,”  “Nuisance,”  “Kennel,”  and  “Cattery.”

Photo of Cady the Labrador,
Courtesy of Grant Hopper

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