What do you do when you are faced with a pet caught in a divorce?

What is the right approach since dogs are not children nor are they simply possessions?  

I’m Karis, a Certified Dog Behaviour Consultant, International Mediator and Pet Custody Specialist.          

 I educate the legal community about the needs of pets surrounding divorce so that ethical and educated agreements can be reached.

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Understanding how the environment affects dogs should guide pet custody agreements.

Shared custody vs sole custody

What are the factors involved in determining which option is most suitable for each individual dog?


Should dogs automatically move between parents with the kids?

Breed of dog

All dogs are not created equal; dogs’ exercise, training and stability needs vary greatly depending on their breed.

Multi-pet household

Can pet families be fairly split up? How do you determine when and if animals can be separated?


All dogs are not created equal; dogs’ exercise, training and stability needs vary greatly depending on their breed.

Multi-pet household

Can pet families be fairly split up? How do you determine when and if animals can be separated?

Rescue animals

When a dog comes from a traumatic background what does that mean for its future?

Online training course

My online training course is specifically designed for mediators, lawyers and judges who deal with pet custody. This course offeres an eye-opening and insightful journey into what it means to look after the best interest of family pets involved in a divorce. 

What course graduates have to say

"After 21-plus-years as a Child Custody Recommending Counselor / Mediator, the issue of what happens with the family pet is one that, not unexpectedly, comes up relatively often. While the effect of separation and/or divorce on Children, and the associated moving between homes, is a well-researched area, the effect on "Fido" has barely been addressed. Yes, we all love and adore our "fur-babies," but they are, in fact, not human and should not be treated as such. They are also, though, not inanimate possessions and property, devoid of reactions to what is taking place around them, as the laws still tend to treat them. Karis fills the void of information regarding what happens to the family pet, from a behavioral standpoint, when there has been a separation between Owners/Guardians. If you work in the field of Child Custody and/or Pet Custody, or if you're going through a separation and you want to know what's best for your shared family pet, Karis's classes are a must-take.

Marci Kraft
Child Custody Recommending Counselor / Mediator

"I loved this training! Your Pet Custody Webinar was fascinating and not only will I use the information and guidance you provided in my mediation practice, I now have a whole new level of understanding of my beloved pup. I highly recommend this training to anyone interested in Pet behavior, not just to those of us who will be helping families make difficult decisions regarding their pets."

Carolyn Kalos

"I am an attorney and mediator who also has a business that helps pets with orthopedic problems. I have seen conflict over animals go to court and the parties and animals all end up worse off. Karis knows and understands animals, conflicts involving animals and how to use mediation to help people find solutions that work best for them and the animals. Her experience as an animal behaviorist and mediator gives her valuable skills and insight. I would recommend this course to anyone involved in conflicts about animals. Karis shares her knowledge and experience in a way that is open and inviting and I learned many things that I will apply."

Liz Rubinstein
Attorney and Mediator

An expert in dog behaviour with more than 25 years professional experience, I have worked with thousands of dogs and their families around the world.

After helping many dogs suffering long-term behaviour problems as a result of a poor custody decision, I saw the need for education in the divorce world about dogs and other pets.

As both a divorce mediator and Certified Dog Behaviour Consultant (CDBC), I specialize in the field of pet custody issues. Through my work as a teacher and public speaker my goal is to educate and empower the divorce community to make ethical, sound and fair pet custody plans for their clients.

Dr. Rolf lamprecht (bvsc)

"Her qualifications, experience and compasion set Karis apart from anyone I have worked with in the field of animal behaviour"
"I have always been impressed by Karis's professionalism and knowledge. Her genuine love of animals and interest in helping the dogs and owners shines through"

Dr. Mark shortreed (bvsc)

contact me

Find out more, sign up for the next course or to arrange a workshop for your firm or organization, please email me by clicking below. 

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