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This man’s love for Marta’s Shih Tzu could change America forever

debtFor six years Tim Schramm and his Maltese Shih Tzu Trip have been constant companions and best friends.

34 years old Nashville The insurance agent took Tryp on his daily walks, fed him, bathed him, took him to the office and made sure his veterinary checkups were up to date.

“I was his man and he was my man,” Schramm said. Independent.

Shyam said last year that his ex-wife refused to even discuss custody or visitation when their marriage ended. And because she owned Tryp for her year before her marriage, a Tennessee divorce court refused to intervene.

“One day I went to work and came home and never saw him again,” he said. Independent.

“He didn’t choose to leave, and I didn’t choose for this to happen. I think he’s thinking, ‘Hey, where did he go?’ waiting for me to come through the door ”

Now Schramm is turning that painful experience into passing legislation. Tennessee A parliament that legally recognizes companion animals as members of the family, not furniture.

The pet rights bill Schramm wants, also known as the TRYP bill, would also allow judges to base custody decisions on the pet’s best interests.

“Without this kind of law, family law attorneys and judges can hardly care,” Schramm said.

The majority of states now treat pets like any other property and divide them between spouses upon divorce.

But the issue of officially recognizing pets as child-like has come to the fore in states across the United States after years of demand from pet owners and a surge in costly and emotionally difficult custody battles. is gaining momentum.

In 2017, Alaska became the first state to pass a divorce law amendment that considers pet well-being.

This “groundbreaking” law empowers judges to jointly protect beloved dogs and cats.

Since then, four other states – new york, California, New Hampshire and Illinois, as well as Washington, DC, have similar laws.

Professor Cathy Hessler, Associate Dean of Animal Law Education, George Washington University School of Law, said: Independent One of the reasons it took so long to pass the Pet Protection Act is that Congress didn’t take the issue seriously.

Hessler, who testified before the Alaska legislature in 2017, said, “A lot of people were worried that[the bill would]lead to a flood of lawsuits.

“It hasn’t happened. Instead, legislative action has encouraged a more peaceful transition to separate families in several states that have passed laws.”

Malta’s Shih Tzu Trip’s Tim Schram says he feels lonely after his beloved pet is embroiled in a divorce

(Courtesy of Tim Schram)

Under the new law, couples can choose whether or not to treat their companion animal as part of the family.

“This can lead to fewer difficult times for the parties and a smoother and faster resolution that takes into account the interests of the animals as well as those involved,” Hessler said.

The Oklahoma Legislature was another government agency that was considering a bill that, if passed, would recognize cats and dogs as sentient rather than inanimate objects.

And according to a survey, US pet owners overwhelmingly agree with that sentiment.

A 2018 American Veterinary Association survey of 50,000 pet owners found that 85% of dog owners and 76% of cat owners consider their pets family.

Christopher Berry, managing attorney at the nonprofit Animal Legal Defense Fund, said: Independent The law lagged behind social changes.

“The law has not kept up with cultural attitudes towards animals,” Berry said in an interview. “People value companion animals more than the law allows.”

Berry said legal disputes between divorcing spouses are common, and the costs to resolve cases often run into the tens of thousands of dollars.

“The cost of litigation is a barrier and one reason historically this issue has received less attention in the courts.

It wasn’t until the 20th century that it became illegal for owners to abuse animals, he added.

Berry said that slowly but surely lawmakers and courts are trying to formally recognize the unique personalities of animals.

Tryp was a close friend and constant companion of Nashville insurance agent Tim Shrum.

(Courtesy of Tim Schram)

Barbara Gislason, Minneapolis-based attorney, pet law and custody, Said Independent The issue has gained worldwide attention, from China to Canada.

She said there is little consistency in how pets are treated under the laws of various states and countries.

Gislason likes to put pets in a special category, between possessions and personalities.

Mr Schramm said Independent There he felt like a “tsunami” of animal welfare laws had passed.

In his case, he said he used “guerrilla marketing” tactics to get the attention of two state representatives, Rep. Caleb Hemmer and Sen. Jeff Yarbro.

He drafted a fake front page for the local newspaper, Tennessianan article written by the ChatGPT artificial intelligence system about two state politicians erupted and handed them over.

“It’s hard to ignore people who come to your office and drop it off,” he said.

Tim Schram’s Maltese Shih Tzu Trip works hard

(Courtesy of Tim Schram)

Hemmer and Yarbro, both Nashville Democrats, agreed to sponsor the bill, which is currently being passed through the Tennessee legislature.

“For many people, their pets are like family members, and they may even take care of them like children,” Hemmer said. Independent in a statement.

“It makes sense for the courts to treat them the same.”

The bill doesn’t give Shrum the chance to reunite with Tryp, but he said he felt a mission to make sure no one else had a similar experience.

“Everything I’ve done is in Tryp’s best interests, and that’s all I ask of Congress.” This man’s love for Marta’s Shih Tzu could change America forever

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