A few months ago, talked about the rising prominence of pet custody disputes in a divorce. Many lawyers are now saying that just like arguing over the custody of a child, the family dog, cat or fish can become a topic of serious discussion during divorce proceedings.

It may sound silly to some Minnesota residents, but many families are attached to their pets in a loving and endearing way. While it may be easy to mock the idea of a person spending many hours in court trying to reach terms on his or her pet, the fact is that some people consider a pet on the same level as a child. Losing such a pet can be emotionally devastating; and considering the seriousness of the issue for some splitting couple, some people are advocating for new pet custody laws to be enacted.

There is at least one New Yorker who feels his dog is a family member, and he’s willing to fork over some big bucks to get his “son” — his own words for Knuckles, his dog — back.

When they broke up, the man says that his ex-girlfriend “kidnapped” the dog and fled to California. The New Yorker is spending $60,000 to put his case together so that he may regain custody of Knuckles. His ex-girlfriend, meanwhile, maintains that the dog was given to her as a gift by the man.

Given the language he used to describe his dog, it seems unlikely the man would just give Knuckles away.

Source: Huffington Post, “Dog Custody Battle For ‘Knuckles’ Costs Craig Dershowitz Over $60,000,” May 14, 2012