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Swedish couple take dog custody battle to court

TT/The Local · 12 Oct 2010, 15:35

Published: 12 Oct 2010 15:35 GMT+02:00

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Kristoffer Ilveborn, a resident of Ystad in southern Sweden, had a verbal agreement with his former partner to jointly own and share the cost of Totte, a Shih Tzu/chihuahua mix, when the couple purchased the dog in the summer of 2008, the local Ystads Allehanda newspaper reported on Tuesday.

When the couple split in September 2009, Ilveborn moved to Ystad, while his ex-girlfriend moved to Gothenburg, a three-hour drive northwest.

Despite their separation, the couple agreed to continue with their joint ownership of the the dog, whereby Totte would move from one home to the other every four weeks.

The first exchanges proceeded smoothly. In September 2009, Ilveborn picked up Totte in Gothenburg and returned the dog in early November. However, when it was time for him to retrieve Totte the following month, the arrangement came to an abrupt end.

"I texted the week before and said I would come up. She then wanted to put it off and I suddenly I realised that I would not get Totte back at all," Ilveborn told the newspaper.

After deliberating for some time, he decided to take his ex to court.

"I emailed [Swedish attorney and former politician] Peter Althin and described my case. He replied that I was entitled to Totte under joint ownership law. I then went and got a representative. There was no other way to go. I just want to meet Totte," said Ilveborn, who paid 3,000 kronor ($450) of the 5,500 kronor buying price for Totte.

On paper, Ilveborn's former partner is the sole registered owner of Totte. But Ilveborn is nevertheless demanding continued visitations with Totte and that his ex-girlfriend pay half the costs of the dog's surgeries and veterinary visits, which amount to nearly 10,000 kronor, as well as the fees associated with the trial.

Ilveborn's legal representative Jan Janik expressed his optimism about his case during Tuesday's oral preparation at Gothenburg district court.

Story continues below…

"It is quite clear that the parties bought the dog together. It is abundantly clear from the documents available," he told the newspaper.

Ilveborn is eager to be reunited with his beloved pet.

"I am very attached to him. He is affectionate and playful even though he has had some illnesses and problems. We have been through so much together," he said.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

16:59 October 12, 2010 by BERTRAM
ouaf ouaf ouaf
17:30 October 12, 2010 by Puffin
I worked with someone in the UK who fought a protracted custody battle with his ex-wife over custody of a rabbit - all carried out through lawyers which must have cost £000s - eventually the ex-wife resorted to rabbit-abduction LOL
18:36 October 12, 2010 by voice of credibility
so funny to read. It has really made me laugh.
22:14 October 12, 2010 by dizzy09
so gay!!!dude get urself a new girl...go and get laid or something...its over.
23:19 October 12, 2010 by jazzIIIlove
this only can happen in Sweden...:)
00:00 October 13, 2010 by RememberAisha
As a dog owner myself... I feel for the guy.

Good luck dude!
00:59 October 13, 2010 by Swedesmith
Easy, one person gets the Shih and the other gets the Tzu.
05:42 October 13, 2010 by porksteak
I was afraid this kind of idiocy only happened in the US after pet owners started calling themselves "pet parents". Ugly break up so they will fight over anything they can.
07:40 October 13, 2010 by flintis
@rememberaisha: that's a dog, & here's me thinking it was a long haired rat & breakfast for my Ridgeback.
08:33 October 13, 2010 by Åskar
That photo isn't Totte.

14:57 October 13, 2010 by izbz
Now that is what we call dog fight....place your bets!!!!!
03:10 October 14, 2010 by Canada_Girl
Translation: I was hoping to get back together - we didn't.

Translation: She started seeing someone else, so I want to make her life miserable.

Buddy, the relationship is over - move on.
07:29 October 14, 2010 by Soft Boiled
This is a silly story.. Just wait until the dog reaches 18 yrs old and then let him decide for himself who he wants. to live with ;)
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