One of the rarely mentioned casualties of divorce is the pets that the couple own. Most of the time, who gets to keep the animals is an easy question, but sometimes, the couple fight more over who gets the dog than anything to do with their children. This isn’t because they care more about the pet, but often because who gets to keep the pets is not something the courts will spend time considering.
When deciding who gets to keep your pets, use the same logic you did when you made decisions for your children. Which spouse will have the time to take proper care of the animal? Who has more room for the animal? Did the animal belong to one spouse or the other before the marriage? Always try to keep your pet’s best interest at heart. Do not use your pets to get back at your spouse. Only the poor pet loses in those circumstances.
If your pet is going to live with you, you can ask for pet support in your divorce settlement, but remember that every request you make is another reason to be pulled into court if you and your spouse decide to fight over it and not just forget about it. When you are working on a settlement, you can ask for anything you want, as long as you remember that every request may add time until your divorce is finalized.
When you are hurt and angry, it is easy to think that your requests are reasonable or that you are going to “get” your ex. Feeling this way is understandable, but again, trying to get back at your ex only causes you more pain. You may not believe that, but the only way you are ever going to heal from the divorce is to be able to move on with your life. You cannot move on if you are still trying over pet support payments or other ridiculous requests every week.
Hurting your spouse will hurt you, too – either in anxiety or financially. Let go of your hurt and anger to start to heal and be happy again.
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