How to Respond to a Pet Nuisance Complaint
Tips for pet owners dealing with housing concerns
Receiving a nuisance complaint about your pet can be scary, but there are effective ways to respond to one that may help resolve the situation. Here are tips to keep in mind.
1. In a nuisance case, typically the burden of proof is on the landlord. This means that if the case goes to court, the landlord is typically responsible for proving that there is a nuisance issue. It’s not the responsibility of the tenant to prove there is no nuisance issue. Every state will have a specific definition of “nuisance.” A lawyer can tell you whether your landlord’s claims against you meet that legal definition. Talk with an attorney for more specific information on what you would have to prove if your case went to court.
2. Find and contact legal resources in your community to learn what qualifies as a “nuisance.” “Nuisance” often means a repeated and ongoing pattern of conduct. One single, isolated incident may not qualify as a nuisance, even if your landlord claims it does.
If you think that your pet is not really causing a nuisance ...
If you think that there is a real nuisance complaint ...
If the issue is barking, get behavioral advice. Contact a dog trainer.
If the issue is house-soiling, a trainer may help with that as well. But you can also buy an enzymatic cleaner at a pet store that will remove urine odors and stains.
Even kitties can be coaxed to do better. Seek assistance to solve cat behavior issues.
Some problem behaviors can be caused by animals' basic instincts. Contact your local animal shelter for low cost spay/neuter services where you live, or use our search function.