Many condo corporations prohibit pets. Some of the reasons for this are the wear and tear pets can inflict on buildings, increased maintenance costs, unwelcome noises and smells.
A recent U.S. study suggests that condo buyers are prepared to pay a premium to live in a building with an unrestricted pet policy. The study was based on 2005-2007 condo sales in the Fort Lauderdale area.
It is estimated that 67% of Canadian households owned a pet in 2010; 35% owning a cat, 32% owning a dog. (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Market Indicator Report July 2011.)
With more than half of Canadian households owning a pet, a no pets policy excludes a significant number of potential buyers or renters.
When talking about pets it is really about dogs and condos are starting to acknowledge this reality.
Some condo buildings are modifying rules and amenities to attract and accommodate pet owners in general but specifically dog owners. This also means protecting the rights of all residents not to be disturbed or threatened by pets. Amenities such as a “pet spa” where pet owners can wash or groom their dog are being considered as are dog bathrooms and dog runs.
This is all to protect neighbours who do not want to be disturbed by barking, smells or messes. It is also to protect the condo infrastructure by preventing damage from dog urine on plants, trees, carpets and elevator cabs.
Dog amenities are seen by some as a way to maintain harmony between dog owners and neighbours.