2006_09_catrep.jpgThere is an awesome NY Times Styles article about lawyers who represent pets... or, more technically, the people who love them. With issues like "dog bites, custody battles, pet trusts and veterinary malpractice" entering into the legal world, many law schools - including Harvard and Columbia - offer classes in animal law. Which does raise some concern over excessive lawsuits, but here in the city, animal law can be a part of something very critical - the right to live in your apartment.

Limitations on the value of pets discourage many from suing for veterinary malpractice, pet lawyers say. But those facing eviction from rent-stabilized apartments because of their pets are more willing to spend money on a pet lawyer, said Darryl M. Vernon, a partner in the Manhattan law firm of Vernon & Ginsburg, who specializes in housing cases stemming from pet ownership.

Mr. Vernon has had clients who spent more than $30,000 fighting such suits. He said he had successfully defended the owner of a cat that was suspected of being part bobcat and a dog owner whose animal was accused of being part wolf. (Wild animals are illegal in New York apartment buildings.)

What hilarity! We wonder if there was DNA testing involved. Anyway, If we had really thought about the potential to be a pet lawyer, we might have considered going to law school, because there's nothing more that tickles our fancy than bringing Fido or Fluffy to court.

And most of the time when we want to sue an animal, it's when we see a video such as this on Cute Overload - sue them for being so darn adorable!

Photograph of cat striking a pose on Atlantic Avenue via Gothamist Contribute