We’re All Animal Lovers - aren’t we?
Condominium and Homeowners Associations have the authority to adopt reasonable Rules and Regulations regarding the conduct of Members of their Association as that conduct impacts upon neighboring Owners. The overwhelming majority of Associations have rules pertaining to pets. There certainly are Associations where there is an outright prohibition on pets.
However, most Community Associations permit their residents to have pets provided the Rules and Regulations are followed. Some Communities limit the types of pets that you can have, for example reptiles, birds or lions, tigers and bears, oh my! Other Associations will permit you to have a pet, provided the pet is not over a certain weight (this is most typically found in dog restrictions). Some Communities will permit you to have a dog and/or cat provided they do not exceed the maximum permissible number, usually no more than 2. Without question, no Community Association will permit you to maintain pets which are being commercially bred. Lastly, it is important to remember that
Property Owner's Rights & Priveleges
just because you are an animal lover does not mean your neighbor is…
In those Communities where dogs are permitted, common rules require you to always leash your dog, not permit your dog to run free, pick up after your dog, leave your dog unattended or from constructing a dog pen and most importantly, from allowing your dog to bark incessantly.
Typically running afoul of your Community’s pet regulations will generate a letter from the Association reminding as to your obligation to comply with the rules and so as to be a good neighbor. Repeated violations however will certainly result in an assessment of a fine to you. At the extreme, and this usually results from a dog which has displayed vicious propensities, the Association may request that the dog be permanently removed from the Community.
Its bears noting that all Municipalities have adopted and enforce ordinances which address pet ownership and as such there may be an occasion where the Association solicits assistance from the local police department or animal control unit to address a situation involving a pet within the Community. The local Municipal Court has the power to assess a fine for a violation. Moral of the story, if you want your family and your neighbors to have a happy coexistence with “Fido” or “Max”, we strongly suggest that you familiarize yourself with and abide by your Community’s pet restrictions and rules.