This dog is at the centre of a legal fight between a man's grieving family and girlfriend

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A legal tussle over a dog has cost both sides thousands in legal fees — and plenty of heartache — while highlighting how the law treats pets in estate battles. 

A Toronto-area court late last month ordered Aliesha Verma to turn over Rocco Junior, an American bull terrier, to her deceased partner’s sister by March 15. But this week Verma asked for a stay on that order while she appeals the decision.

“He’s my family, he’s my friend, he’s my child,” Verma told CBC Toronto.

She says the dog was a gift and that she relies on it for emotional and mental support.

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Verma and Leonard Carvalho had been together for about six years when he died

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