What Are Breed Restrictions? 15 Common Restricted Dog Breeds


Your pet is your beloved friend, which makes them a major consideration when faced with a life-changing decision like moving to a new apartment. While many apartments allow pets, some have breed restrictions. If an apartment complex rejects your rental application because your dog is of a restricted breed, you shouldn’t give up hope. Follow this guide to better understand apartment breed restrictions and how you can get around them.

What are the apartment breed restrictions?

Apartment breed restrictions refer to the rules that many apartment buildings or apartment complexes impose to prohibit certain breeds of dogs for a variety of reasons. In general, these restrictions apply to dogs that people consider unsuitable for apartment living, such as large, uncontrollable, dangerous, or loud dogs. Some apartments also have restrictions based on height, weight, age and exercise needs.

Property owners and managers have the freedom to choose which specific dog breeds they wish to ban. As such, a shortlist of breeds can include any type of dog, from the Great Dane to Chihuahuas. Nonetheless, assistance and emotional support dogs are exempt from the apartment breed restrictions, even if they belong to one of the prohibited breeds. This is because they are under the protection of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Why do apartments have race restrictions?

Apartments can restrict certain breeds of dogs for several reasons, the most important of which is safety. Prohibited breeds are generally dogs that the general public considers dangerous. They are larger than most other types of dogs, which makes them more likely to cause serious injury if they attack someone.

Additionally, apartments may also ban dogs due to their tendency for destructive behavior, such as digging, scratching, scratching, and chewing. Larger breeds can cause greater damage, but small dogs are also susceptible to destructive behavior. Property owners and managers impose breed restrictions because they want to avoid liability and possible property damage, one of the reasons pet fees exist in the first place.

Another reason apartments have a restricted breed list is because of insurance issues. The insurance company that provides coverage for an apartment has an obligation to compensate for costs and damages resulting from injuries occurring on the property. To minimize their risk, many insurers only offer insurance to apartments that have imposed breed restrictions. Unfortunately, such rules make it more and more difficult to find apartments that accept dogs of certain breeds.

What breeds of dogs are generally restricted?

When looking for suitable apartments, it is essential to know whether the owner considers your four-legged friend to be a restricted breed. Keep in mind that apartments may also ban dogs mixed with one of the restricted breeds. Breed restrictions can vary widely from apartment to apartment, but a restricted breed list often includes the following breeds:

  • American Pit Bull Terriers
  • American bulldogs
  • Staffordshire Terriers
  • Rottweilers
  • Akitas
  • German Shepherds
  • Doberman pinschers
  • Boxers
  • Mastiffs
  • Malamutes
  • Great Danes
  • Cane Corsos
  • Huskies
  • Chow chows
  • Wolf hybrids

What to do if your dog is considered a restricted breed

Although you consider your dog to be part of your family and do not leave him behind, some buildings or complexes may not accommodate your pet if it is of a restricted breed. However, that does not mean that it is impossible to overcome a breed restriction, especially if your animal companion is well behaved. Here are some helpful tips that can help you overcome apartment breed restrictions:

  • Don’t hide your dog: While it may seem like an easy fix, trying to hide your dog from the property manager or owner can have negative consequences. If your landlord finds your pet, they have the legal right to terminate your lease and even take legal action against you for intentional breach of the agreement. So, you shouldn’t try to lie about your dog because you are exposing yourself to legal trouble.
  • Create a pet CV: You may have invested a lot of time and effort in making sure your dog is behaving correctly. Even if you are sure that your pet will not be a problem, your owner may have doubts. To present a compelling case, create a list of details showing why your dog will not pose a threat to people and property. Some of the things you can put on a pet resume include training certificates, veterinary records, and photos. You may also want to bring your dog for an interview so the owner can see his behavior and personality firsthand.
  • Provide references: Since you love your pet, you can be a bit biased when assessing his temperament. However, your owner also wants to know what other people think of your dog. That is why you need to get references from people who can attest to your pet’s good qualities. The best referrals are professionals who have interacted with your pet on a semi-regular basis, such as trainers, vets, groomers, and dog walkers. These people interact with dogs on a regular basis, so they are more apt to assess aggression.
  • Purchase pet liability insurance: As mentioned earlier, insurance issues are one of the main reasons for banning certain breeds of dogs. Therefore, you may be able to allay your landlord’s concerns by obtaining a tenant’s insurance policy that includes pet liability insurance. Many landlords require all of their tenants to have insurance whether or not they have pets. If so, all you need to do is purchase a policy that covers pets. If you already have tenant insurance, simply print your policy and highlight the section on pets.

Renting with a dog of a restricted breed is by no means an easy task. However, you can increase your chances of success if you have a solid resume for your pet, good references, and pet liability insurance.

If you want to know which apartments in your moving destination have more flexible breed restrictions, use Zumper’s pet filter to begin your search.

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