Living with Pets in Rentals and Apartments

2

There's nothing like a cold nose and warm fur to make a house feel like a home, even if you're renting (and perhaps especially when renting.) With nearly a third of Americans renting their living spaces, many pet owners find it can be tricky navigating rental regulations.

This concept became real to me as I helped a friend find an apartment that would accept his yellow Labrador Retriever. I had no idea that there was such a wide range of policies between rental units. Breed regulations, size limits and pet deposits were things that I'd never had to worry about while owning my own home.

The Price of Pet Companionship

Thankfully, my friend was able to find a place that didn't exclude his large dog, though the rent will be an extra $25 monthly. Additionally, he had to provide a $100  refundable pet deposit and a $200 non-refundable pet fee. Two pets double the pet deposit, non-refundable pet fee and monthly pet rent. It's no wonder so many pets end up at shelters because of "change in owner living circumstance."

Random Breed Restrictions

My friend was relieved that his dog was one of the breeds this complex accepts. Many renters aren't so fortunate.  As I scanned the list of excluded dog breeds, I expected to see the pit bull terrier, and maybe the other typically-vilified breeds like the Doberman. I was shocked at the list!

Excluded Breeds:

Afghan Hound, Akita, Australian Cattle Dog, Basenji, Basset Hound, Bedlington Terrier, Bernese (Mountain Dog, I'm assuming), Bloodhound, Boxer, Bulldog, Chow, Dalmation, Doberman, Dog de Bordeaux, Elkhound, Fila Brasileiro, Foxhound, German Shepherd, Great Dane, Greyhound, Husky, Keeshond, Malamute, Mastiff, Pitt Bull, Presa Canario, Pointer, Rottweiler, Saint Bernard, Saluki and Weimaraner.  

Additional regulations state that all dogs and cats must be at least one year of age and spayed or neutered. Pet photos and vaccination records have to be on file. Pets have to be leashed at all times and can't bark excessively. Any pet waste left will be a $75 fee per offense. Pets that are seen off leash can be fined $75 as well. 

I now find myself much less likely to judge the former owners of pets surrendered at the shelters.

This infographic shares statistics about pets in apartments.

Apartment Statistics June 2013 

Do you agree with the breed exclusions at this apartment complex?

Have you had to relinquish pets because of housing regulations or had to move because of your pets?


Photo courtesy of 34 year old mullberry bush

This entry was posted by Mary.
Debbie on October 8 at 8:05 AM said:

I think apartments can be very short sighted with breed restrictions - they should either allow dogs or not and exclusions should be based on a meeting with the dog itself because pets are just like people, they have their own personalities and experiences which mold them. My son has an Akita and the challenge hasn't been so much her breed (although we did run into a few places that had breed exclusions which included Akitas). In most cases the issues were based on the weight of the dog. He has been fortunate both during his undergraduate education (in Virginia) and his graduate education (currently in Louisiana) to find dog friendly apartments. His current apartment manager adores his pup (they even give out pet of the month awards which includes a new toy). Granted we worked to make sure she was socialized from the time he brought her home at about 8 weeks - she is generally a friendly girl - never issues with people, but occasional issues with other dogs, but that is to be expected of any dog. We've encountered some pretty aggressive small breed dogs that you never see on a restriction list!
julia on October 15 at 8:15 PM said:

My friend had a pit and they kicked her out because of it.
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