Many people think of their pets as children, so it’s surprising a law treating them as such hasn’t exited until now.
Recently, Alaska became the first state to pass a bill that considers the well-being of pets during divorce proceedings.
This means that they will be considered as children of the couple instead of property (as they are in most states).
This does make sense. A 2011 survey revealed a growing trend of caring more deeply for pets. If this trend continues, the majority of people will feel pets needed to been seen as such in the eye of the law.
However, this does not mean they necessarily need to be humanized. Experts agree that since pets do not have the same mindset or instincts as humans, humans should not act like this is the case (putting them in “time out”, etc.) as it does not bode well for the animal’s psychology.
It’s all about respecting that pets are living beings in need of physical and emotional care. The bill aims to do that by taking precautions to ensure the animal is not abused by their custodian.
Not everyone shares this sentiment. Late last year, a Canadian judge ruled against treating dogs the same as children.
While Alaska is the first state to enact this bill, individual courts across the U.S. have been moving toward this trend.
With animals such a large part of a pet owner’s life, this moves makes nothing but sense.