The Sao Paulo couple got their Yorkshire terrier in 2008, but the dog became a bone of contention when they split up in 2011.
The woman not only held on to the animal but, according to her former partner, "prevented him from entering into contact," the Superior Justice Tribunal said in a statement from the capital Brasilia.
Taking his former companion to court, initially in Sao Paulo and then all the way to the Superior Justice Tribunal appeals court, the man claimed "intense anguish" over the separation.
The tribunal ruled Tuesday to uphold the Sao Paulo court's earlier decision in favor of the dog-loving man.
"He may also participate in activities such as taking the animal to the vet."
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