Searching for a home in India whilst still keeping your furry friend close proves to be somewhat of a challenge nowadays. Anywhere you go, there are vague stipulations that prohibit you from owning a pet and not to mention, some implicit hostility when you even hint at owning an animal companion.
But animal-lovers need not fret, the law is in your favour! India’s animal welfare laws recognize that animal companionship is as crucial for mental health as human companionship. Since the mean age of home buyers is on the decline and life only seems to get more quick-paced, a lot of people do entertain the idea of owning a pet at least once, and it appears that there will be an uptick of pet – owners in housing societies in the future years.
My Furries has compiled a list of some common queries concerning pets in residential societies, so read on to know your freedoms!
- So can my housing society ban my pet?
Certainly Not!! Regardless of the type of housing unit, banning pets is illegal, according to Section 11(3) Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960. A majority vote by all the residents is not justified either, as per Article 51A (g), which states that every citizen must have compassion for all living creatures.
- My dog is quite large and a little noisy. Should I be worried?
There is no need to worry; your housing society cannot discriminate against breeds, size, etc. of any animal companion.
As for your dog’s barking, try to keep it to a minimum, especially at night. However, do remember that your dog’s barking is not a valid reason for its removal and that its barking must be tolerated by society.
- My society forces me to pay a fine of Rs.100 every time I walk my dog in the park. Is this allowed?
Nope, it is illegal to frame any regulation that inconveniences your pet parenting. Your society cannot have a say in the number of pets you own, the type of animal, etc.
Even setting up such ridiculous bans is a transgression of your fundamental freedom entrusted to you as a citizen of India.
They also can’t create any by-laws that mandate you clean up, but we highly recommend that you clean up the country and prevent any further disruptions within society. No one likes to step in dog droppings, and it is all about coexisting, so society is entitled to make reasonable requests concerning your pet.
- My society says that my pet is banned from using the lift. How do I get around this problem?
Just remember your rights. A housing society cannot ban your pet from using the lifts or gardens or any common areas, though some imaginative compromises can be agreed upon. However, it is recommended that you leash your pet to consider its safety and others.
- I leash my dog every time I go out into the common areas. But the head of my society wants me to start muzzling my pooch. What do I do?
You are not required to muzzle your dog no matter what your housing association says. Unless your dog feels more comfortable in a muzzle, just leashing your dog is good enough and you are not obliged to muzzle it as well.
- I have been repeatedly harassed and threatened by my home association to give up my precious pet. What do I do?
Consult a lawyer or your local animal welfare association. They will suggest the best course of action. Your housing society cannot intimidate you into giving up an animal as intimidation itself is a blatant offence of the law. If they somehow manage to give up your pet, it will have assisted violation of the law.
All of the listed resolutions are following the circular regarding pets released by the AWBI in 2015.
- Pet Parents Need to Compromise Too
You do have some specific obligations living in a housing society. Be willing to compromise reasonably and adjust to the residential atmosphere. Clean up after your pet. Make sure it doesn’t cause a commotion and that it is well-behaved. For both of your sakes, do try to be a cooperative member of your society. After all, amity is a two-way street, so do not unnecessarily cause a ruckus with your pet.
It’s all about peaceful living within a diverse community. Under Article 21, the Supreme Court maintains every animal has the right to life and security, so your housing association cannot deprive you or your pet of your civic freedoms. Subscribe to us to know more about such laws and live a rightful life with your furries.