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Sharing Custody Of A Dog

Sharing custody of a dog

Recent break ups or divorces usually entail selling and splitting the house, furniture, or all the other items that you once shared. Material items come and go and are pretty easy to split… but what happens to your dog? You can’t imagine life without your dog, as you and your kids have come to love him and he is dubbed the other child of the family. In this situation, it’s important to sit and discuss the pros and cons of sharing custody. There are many things to consider, for your dog’s sake, so take the time to consider some important information and tips.

First, you should come up with a schedule, just like one you would make for yourself or your kids. Because Fido doesn’t know the schedule, it’s important to provide him with ample comfort and love. Switch off days or weekends according to both of your schedules. Letting your kids have a say in the schedule could be extremely helpful and impactful, as giving them a little power can help ease any of their ambivalent or uneasy feelings. Instill in them the importance of being mindful of Fido’s situation and that he won’t be totally thrilled with the new arrangements at first either. At each house, keep a stash of your dog’s staples and necessities. Keeping the same treats, some of his toys, his bed, and leashes at each location will help your dog to relax and feel safe. Consistency is definitely key so be sure to implement the same rules at each home. For example, if your dog isn’t allowed to sit on your bed at one home, make sure he isn’t allowed at the other home too. 

This could be a lot for your dog to absorb so it’s crucial to keep an eye on your dog for changes in behavior or mood. If you see that he’s depressed or anxious, tell your veterinarian in order to address any issues quickly and properly. 

Every custody situation involving an ex, parent and child, or even friends, is completely subjective and dynamic. Making arrangements that fit both of your schedules is something that must be worked out in order for your dog to live a happy and healthy life. Sharing your pooch post-breakup can be a positive experience and it will gradually become normalized into your daily life.

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