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  • Scott Berry

How Much Do You Love Your Pet?

Establishing A Pet Trust


Have you ever wondered what would happen to your beloved pet should you pass on before your pet does? Minnesota has passed a new law, safeguarding the life of your pet should you choose[1]. There are many animals that end up in shelters due to the passing on of their owners. With the new state law allowing for the provision of setting up a trust for the care and well-being of your animal, you can rest easy that should you precede your beloved pet in death, they will be taken care of for the duration of their life.

​Great news for all the animals aficionados in Minnesota!

Making sure your pet has appropriate care and love after you pass is not a new topic for many states. According to the HSUS (Humane Society of United States) All Animals magazine, July/August, 2013 issue, estate planning experts have been urging pet owners to prepare for the possibility of their animal companions outliving them. It was noted that many pet owners believe that their family members will continue on with the love and support that their pet is accustomed to. Sadly, this is not always the case and many of these pets are relinquished to an animal shelter[2]. Below are some steps to consider in preparing for the well-being of your pet:

1. Identify a caregiver; find a family member, friend, or even your veterinarian who will be willing to continue on with your level of love and care for your pet. Speak to him/her and convey your wishes. After you come to an agreement on them continuing the love and care for your pet, get these provisions in writing.​

2. Identify an alternate caregiver or two; should your primary pet caregiver run into conflicts, have a backup plan as to who will be able to give your pet a loving, caring home.

3. Write in detail the level of care your pet has been accustomed to and what medical treatment your pet has enjoyed in the past. This should include all feeding information as well as health records. Also determine the care and measures you would like taken in the end-of-life stages of your pet.

4. Set aside a fund to be used in the care of your pet. Just like people, our animal friends can be the recipient of money set aside in a trust. The appointed trustee will have access to these funds which will be used in the healthcare and maintenance of your pet’s lifestyle.


Remember this; as with people, animals can be taken care of to the level of your choosing. For more information on assuring the successful care and well-being of your pet after you pass, give us a call.

[1] Minn Stat 501C.0408

[2] For more information on how you can help save the life of a pet, contact Ruff Start Rescue: http://www.ruffstartrescue.org