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Written by Peter Carter

July 3, 2016

Is Brisbane becoming like New York with a canine in every other home unit?Owner’s Corporations a.k.a. body corporates have become more relaxed about pets in apartments. Probably because they had to.

Any by-law body corporate containing an absolute ban or blanket ban in relation to the keeping of animals within a unit is now considered legally unreasonable and therefore void.

On the other hand a by-law saying that keeping of pets is subject to body corporate discretion is though, ok. In that case, the unit owner must apply to body corporate for approval of the particular pet.

If accompanied by evidence – eg from a qualified trainer – the dog or cat is house trained, doesn’t create odours, won’t dig holes or incessantly bark, approval should be granted on condition the pet doesn’t do such things.

With that evidence, any unit owner can keep a dog or cat in their apartment subject to observing reasonable body corporate rules.

What about two dogs or two cats? Same issues apply. Probably reasonable, if they are both small animals.

While a developer still has control of the body corporate – until all new stock has been sold – consent for pets is far easier and more likely to obtain. That’s because the developer will be flexible to get your business.

One would expect pet numbers in apartments to be on the rise but it will probably take time for this social improvement to reach the stage where the majority of owners in buildings are keeping their house puppy or cat.

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