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Henry Vangael

Question:

Hello Myriam,
I have some experience with owners and tenants. It is to be judged on a case by case basis : is your animal small and not noisy you have the right to keep it while you rent a property. Meaning that holding a big dog (= needs space) or a dangerous dog or one that's barking often is a reason to get you or your animal out of the property. A dangerous animal or a big dog in an apartment is by definition considered wrong (=violates animal welfare). Note that the characteristic smell of animals or smoking is often difficult to remove afterwards. Meaning a cost to 'clean' the apartment when the tenant leaves. Apart from the owner there are often apartment-rules (which a tenant should receive at the start and which were made by the group of owners of the apartments in a building) that specify many rules about noise, satellite antennas, animals in the common parts of the building, use of the garden, parking, use of common parts of the building etc. These rules too can specify limits regarding animals in order to avoid noise, dirt, .... Lately some people consider holding cats wrong because their impact on birds is so devastating. It is possible that judges will follow such argument as acceptable now that society is getting more concerned about nature.

by Henry Vangael on 21 Apr 2017
Myriam Friedmann

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Answer:

Hi Henry,

Sorry but it is not a question of case by case. There are some legal dispositions and there is no case by case.
The law is very clear and an owner cannot legally refuse the right to own a pet by a tenant.

However it is true that some owners do not want to have animals in their homes. And although this is illegal, there is no point in fighting the owner or taking him to court.

The best is to find out when you are interested in a place, if the owner will accept the animal or not.

After that, if the place is damaged by the animal, obviously the tenant will have to be compensated at the time of departure. Exactly in the same way he will have to compensate for any damage made by any member of his family.
There is no question of whether the animal is small or large.

It is true however that if the animal causes nuisance to the other occupants of the building, such as barking or crying, the case can be taken to proximity court and the judge could rule that the owner needs to take dispositions to stop the nuisance.

Best regards,
Myriam

by Myriam Friedmann on 25 Apr 2017

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