Our Co-Founder and President Abby G talks about getting funding as a small business and our early struggles as a company in these 30-Second Mentor Spots.
Are You Allowed To Have Dogs In A Condo Or Apartment?
Whether or not dogs are allowed where you live is a common concern for dog owners who are planning on moving or are already experiencing problems where they currently live. These issues are often related to living in a condo or apartment building. If you find out your dog is not allowed where you live once you're already living there, it can create a serious dilemma: Move, or give up your dog. This is an awful situation and an equally awful decision, so make sure you know in advance what your rights are to dog ownership where you live or where you are considering moving to.
Can You Keep Dogs In Apartment Buildings?
Once upon a time (the late 1980s), a couple in Toronto was evicted from their apartment building. They had a cat named Fluffy, but their apartment building had a no-pets clause. Their landlord took them to court to evict them - and won. Their eviction was even upheld by the Ontario Supreme Court.
As a result of the precident-setting ruling, something awful happened: apartment buildings tried to evict thousands of people with pets across Toronto. An almost equal number of pets were left at shelters across the city, which were already overwhelmed as is often the case with urban animal shelters.
In 1990, attorney general Ian Scott amended the Ontario Landlord Tenant Act to ensure that this wouldn't happen again, and this amendment is commonly referred to as "Fluffy's Law".
Fluffy’s Law: Despite any no-pets policy in an Ontario apartment building, tenants cannot be evicted for having a pet unless the pet is dangerous, someone is allergic or the pet is destroying the property.
Sadly, each province has its own landlord tenant act and the above applies only to the landlord tenant act in Ontario. Manitoba has tried (and failed) to implement their own Fluffy's Law, and in BC, tenants can easily be evicted for contravening "no-pets" clauses.
Pet Friendly Rentals is a great site to help you find a pet-friendly apartment building if you don't live in a place where provincial law overrules no-pets clauses. You might even want to consider their tips on creating a "pet resume", which you can show potential landlords who are hesitant about accepting a tenant with a dog. They've also got a side for landlords: Check out the "renting to responsible pet owners" section so you can know in advance what questions your landlord might ask about your dog.
Keep in mind that not all no-pets clauses are equal: You may have a case if a landlord said you could have a dog despite what the lease says, if the landlord attempts to enforce a new no-pets clause after you and your dog have lived in the building for a period of time or the landlord all of a sudden tries to enforce a no-pets clause that already exists when they didn't seem to mind before.
Can You Keep Dogs In Condo Buildings?
No matter what province they're in, condominium buildings always have their own set of rules and restrictions when it comes to pets. Many allow pets up to a certain size or weight, while others will ban pets of any kind. The condominium can enforce no-pets rules even if the building is in Ontario. These rules can be found in the building's condo declaration, which is a document that governs the condo and describes all of the rules, including those about pets, in detail.
If you have a dog, it's best to find a condo that allows pets to prevent a costly legal situation from arising later on. But if you already have a dog in a condo that doesn't allow pets, there are two things that could happen:
The condominium corporation takes you to court because they enforce their no-pets rules to the letter. This history of enforcing the rules shows they're not just picking on your and your dog, and they are more likely to win.
Or, the condominium corporation enforces their rules haphazardly or only some of the time. This will also be taken into consideration in a court case, and if they don't seem to bother everyone in the building with pets who are also breaking the rules, you might have a case. Either way, the decision will rest in the hands of the judge.
Because every situation is unique, make sure you ask about pet restrictions before you move anywhere.