Living in a condo with a dog | Vistoo

Living in a condo with a dog

Moving with a dog is not always the easiest thing to do. There are many regulations that can restrict you when choosing your new condo if you have a dog with you, or any other pet for that matter.


Fortunately, Vistoo is here to familiarize you with some important concepts you should know regarding what the law says about buying a condo and the rights of canines in a condo.


Choosing a building that accepts pets


The first step to living in a condo with a dog is, of course, to find a condo that accepts pets like yours.

In theory this may sound simple enough, but in practice it can sometimes be a little more complex when you consider all the criteria that may be in place.

The declaration of co-ownership is where the building rules are stated and that is where you will find out if your companions are welcome.

In fact, some condos accept only small dogs, while others prohibit animals altogether.

Technically, a condominium by-law cannot completely prohibit the possession of a house pet, but some do anyway. 

In such cases, although the clause is considered unwritten, it may not be advisable to enter into a situation where the syndicate or neighbouring residents obviously do not want pets present.

In addition, there are several restrictions that are perfectly legal and may indicate that your dog is not welcome.


Before entering into a condominium situation, you should be 100% familiar with the commitments you agree to abide by, by signing the declaration of co-ownership, whether it is with respect to pets or any other element of communal living.


With respect to dogs, the rules could:

  • Ask you to keep your pet out of the common areas. Your pet may accompany you only to enter or exit the building.
  • Permanently remove the animal if, in your neighbors’ and cohabitants’ opinion, it is considered a nuisance to the neighbourhood.
  • Only keep an animal that meets certain criteria, such as a small dog, or a dog of certain breeds. In fact, certain breeds may be forbidden if they are on a list of animals considered dangerous.
  • And other possibilities.


In short, if you are looking for a condo where you want to live with your dog, make sure you fully understand the rules and regulations regarding your dog so that you don't have any unpleasant surprises after buying your condo.


Building rules: a matter of common sense


However, once you've found a building that accepts a dog like yours, their presence is usually subject to certain rules, which will vary by location.

While these rules are those stipulated in your declaration of co-ownership, there are still some common sense issues that are in place and sometimes even regulated by the city. 


Here are some general recommendations to follow to keep your condo running smoothly for you and your pet:

  • Make sure you respect the number of pets allowed by your city. For example, the city of Montreal allows 4 animals in a condo, including 2 dogs.
  • Do not allow your pet to relieve itself in common areas.
  • Make sure your dog does not bark when you are away, etc.


These are just a few common sense approaches that can allow you to live with your pet without having problems with your neighbors or the condominium board.

Even if the by-laws do not cover all potential situations, it is generally preferable to do everything you can to avoid causing problems in all aspects of condominium living.

Of course, the rules of the building should always take precedence over all others and you should be well informed about them before buying a condo where you plan to live with a dog.


Is it possible to have the declaration of co-ownership changed?


The Declaration of Co-ownership is not a document written in stone. In order to have it changed, you must obtain a favourable majority vote. The percentage of this majority may even vary depending on the type of modification being proposed.


If you currently own a pet that complies with the condominium by-laws, you can celebrate: it is impossible to ban pets without obtaining the agreement of all the co-owners who already own pets.


Conversely, it is possible to remove certain restrictions on pets, but this can be just as difficult, as you will have to put it to a vote.


In short, if you already have your dog, you are legally protected from any sudden changes that could alter the situation. 


However, if you want to get a dog in a building that has several restrictions on them, it may be difficult to get those restrictions changed.


Find the right neighborhood for your needs


So, if you're absolutely looking for a pet-friendly condominium, or you have any other request that governs your buying needs, there's no way you can jump into a purchase project without first being well prepared.


In order for you and your furry friend to make the most of your next home, our interactive map is perfect for shopping for a new home that will be in the location of your dreams and offer the space you both need.


Vistoo is the platform for new real estate in Canada that will help you find the right condo for sale to welcome your pooch.