Condominiums are one of the most convenient types of property: they’re compact and just nice for a small family of three, they often come with security which makes them a little safer than your regular landed house, gym and pool facilities, with some even having F&B establishments just downstairs.
Despite their convenience, there’s one demographic that might often worry over whether or not living in a condo is the right choice—pet owners. More specifically, dog owners.
How many people do you know own at least one small dog in their condo, and when asked whether it’s allowed by management, they say “not really” or “I don’t know”?
A majority of us who don’t dabble in property matters probably assume that most condos aren’t dog-friendly, and so resort to keeping our furry friends quiet and sneaking them in and out discreetly.
You might be pleased to learn that, depending on where you’re living, you might actually have the right to keep a dog in your condo even if management doesn’t allow it.
1. Who decides whether you can keep a dog in your condo?
There’s a provision in the Strata Management (Maintenance & Management) Regulations 2015 that states pets can be kept in a high-rise residence as long as they don’t pose an annoyance, nuisance, or health risks to other residents.
Despite that, it still depends on where your condo is located. According to AskLegal, there are some local councils in Klang Valley that prohibit pets in high rise buildings like Petaling Jaya City Council, Ampang Jaya Municipal Council, and Kajang Municipal Council.
On the other hand, councils that do allow it include the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) and Subang Jaya Municipal Council.
So, whether or not your condo’s management says you can keep a dog in your unit, local council rules override condo management rules, which can be good or bad, depending on where you’re located.
2. What kinds of dogs are allowed to be kept?
In general, larger breeds like golden retrievers will be hard to raise in a condo. Smaller dogs are more accepted because they require less space to roam around and overall appear more manageable thanks to their size.
If you’re living in a KL condo, iProperty states that under the Undang-Undang Kecil Pelesenan Anjing dan Rumah Pembiakan Anjing (Wilayah Persekutuan) (Pindaan) 2011 UUK, the mayor only allows one small dog per unit.
The types of breeds allowed are Miniature Pinscher, Bichon Frise, Pekingese, Papillon, Toy Poodle, Japanese Chin, Maltese, Pomeranian, and Chihuahua.
Dog breeds that aren’t allowed are Pit Bulls, American Bull Dog, Neopolitan Mastiff, Japanese Tosa, Akita, Dogo Argentino, and Fila Brasileiro.
3. What other necessary requirements must I fulfil?
All domesticated dogs—yes, even the small ones—require a license that has to be renewed regularly at your local council for a fee.
Getting your dog a license isn’t just to abide by the laws because it also helps ensure that your pet is returned home safely if they get lost.
For those in KL, DBKL has an online portal specifically for Dog License Management where one can apply for or renew a dog’s license online.
Applicants must enclose a consent letter or written approval from the condo’s management when applying for a license.
The application will be processed within 14 working days, and once approved, applicants have to make payment at any DBKL branch, upon which you’ll receive your dog’s badge and receipt.
4. What should I do if management still says no?
As long as your residence is located in an area governed by a local council that allows pets to be kept in condos, you have the right to challenge those rules through an online application called the Strata Management Tribunal (SMT).
If you make it known that your dog is in line with the district’s requirements, the management may give in to the court upon a successful challenge.
However, do bear in mind that the appeal may not be considered if you’re only renting the unit.
5. How do I keep myself and my dog out of trouble?
Once you’ve gotten your dog a license, it doesn’t mean that they’re free to roam around as they please. They still must be kept under supervision at all times, especially so when outside of your residence unit.
Owners should leash their dog when taking it outside of the unit out of consideration for other residents and the general residence property.
Always keep your dog away from any restricted areas (for their own safety too) and clean up after them. Lastly, most responsible owners should already to know to vaccinate their pets, but in case it still needs to be said, please vaccinate your pets!
To be very sure about whether or not your dog is allowed to live with you in your condo, you should definitely check out and understand the laws of your local council concerning this matter.
Let’s also make sure that our “dogs” are actually our common domesticated furry friends and not a wild sun bear cub or any other endangered species of animal.