Pets Allowed in Rental Properties: They Deserve a Home Too

For two and a half years now, Scott Baird has struggled to find a rental property in Langwarrin because he has always had pets.


But on the 2nd of March 2020, the Residential Tenancies Act 1997 was officially changed so that tenants are allowed to have pets in rental properties.


“We were told that we were allowed to rent our old house only if the dog was an outside dog, like come on, I want a pet not a dependent neighbour”, Scott said.


This new rule is a blessing for him as he now does not have to choose between a house and his 15-month old staffy puppy.


But there are a few loopholes for landlords.


“In a limited number of circumstances, it would not be possible to have a pet, if for example a local council banned backyard chickens, or if a body corporate banned pets”, Jonathan Hair and Brendan Arrow, journalists for the ABC News, write.


Tannaya Jessop, a Property Portfolio Manager for The Hopkins Group, says that if you read the small print, it says that if a request is denied, tenants can appeal to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.


“A landlord then cannot unreasonably refuse the request for a pet unless a valid reason is given”, Jessop writes.


Scott, however, believes that landlords will use this loophole in the law to say no to pets.


“I can see this being an opening for property managers and landlords to bend the law in ways it wasn’t intended”, Scott explained.


Landlord Tania Carnie has bought three rental properties over the last ten years.


Tania has always allowed her tenants to have pets and was pleased with the new law.


“I am of the opinion that humans can do more damage than any animal can”, Tania stated.


But despite loving animals, Tania does think it is unfair to take the decision away from the landlords.


“I guess if you own something, you really should be entitled to choose what you do with it … I think landlords need to have the right to say yes and no”, Tania states.


For landlords like Tania, the rule is not all it’s cracked up to be, as it takes the final say away from them.


For renters like Scott, the rule is a dream come true, as it ensures that he can always include his puppy in his family.






Our writers are independent contributors. The opinions expressed in their articles are their own. They are not the views, nor do they reflect the views, of Malarkey Publications.

About Shannon Cole

My name is Shannon Cole and I am 20 years old. I am a journalism student at Deakin University, while also working part-time as a swimming instructor. I got the opportunity to write for The Footy Almanac through one of my university units, and I also have a personal blog where I post articles (, so feel free to check that out. I hope you enjoy my articles and keep an eye out for any new ones I post!


  1. citrus bob says

    Great Shannon. Only needed clarification on this so perhaps more tourist accommodation houses will allow us to take our dog Chloe with us on holidays. I guess we could call her our daughter anyway?
    Might be a good research article for you?
    Best of luck for the future.

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