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Really? NYC Pomeranian - and His Website - At Center of $500,000 Custody Battle

Sammy the Pomeranian is cute. But is he $500,000 cute? His owner, Scott Smith, seems to thinks so. Mr. Smith, his sister Jessica, and his girlfriend Anna Camara started a website, Sammy and the City, featuring the insanely photogenic dog. The site is mostly cute photos of Sammy in various famous New York City locations. The photos on the website were taken by Ms. Camara; the captions were written by Mr. Smith. It’s unclear what, if anything, Mr. Smith’s sister actually contributed.

When Mr. Smith and Ms. Camara broke up, they worked together on the website for a while, and then things turned sour, ABC News reports.

Mr. Smith says that Ms. Camara, who handled the photography for the website, listed herself as sole owner in efforts to trademark the business’s name and register the Web site, and changed the site’s passwords to effectively lock him out of the business. Mr. Smith also alleges that Ms. Camara stole the iPad he was using in order to change passwords.

Ms. Camara says the website has never made a dime, but Mr. Smith has filed a $500,000 lawsuit against her for scuttling the business.

“This is one of the biggest atrocities that has ever happened to a family,” Smith told The New York Post, in one of the biggest overstatements that has ever happened in a newspaper. But the insanity doesn’t stop there.

Mr. Smith admits that he attempted to steal Ms. Camara’s iPhone to retrieve the passwords during an April meeting. The ensuing scuffle landed Mr. Smith in jail on a petty larceny charge.

On NBC’s TODAY this week, Mr. Smith defended his lawsuit. Although he’s suing for only $500,000, he believes the website is worth at least $1 million. He apparently arrived at that deranged figure by calculating the “inherent value” he has assigned to each user, using the recent acquisition of Instagram by Facebook for $1 billion to gauge that value.

He admitted that “Sammy in the City” is not Facebook or Instagram, but insisted, “there’s a value for an audience.”

Oh, yeah, and then there’s the dog. Mr. Smith says he owns the dog; Ms. Camara says Mr. Smith signed a notarized document giving her co-ownership.

Sammy and the City seems to have stalled. In the mean time, Mr. Scott has started a new Tumblr site called “Everybody Loves Sammy” in which he asks for donations from the public “so we can grow the “Everybody Loves Sammy” Community together and keep it a happy place. One can only hope Ms. Camara will independently start her own site, playing off the title of a third television show.

(Photo Credit: Facebook/Everybody Loves Sammy)

(via ABC News)

Read more from Joslyn at Strollerderby and at her blog, stark. raving. mad. mommy. You can also follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

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