Pet Law Resource Roundup

April 11th marks National Pet Day in Canada! In celebration of our furry/feathery/scaly friends, we wanted to do a round-up of some recent and helpful resources on all things pet law! And of course, use this opportunity to show off some of our personal favourites.  

Pets and Homes 

Dog sitting on bed in front of fire placePlump orange cat laying on his back

Sitka sitting regally in front of the fire, surveying her domain & Leo, in repose.

Pets in residential tenancies in BC are always a hot button issue. If you have a patron wondering if their landlord can restrict pets in their rental unit or how much they can ask for a pet deposit, check out the resources below:  

  • TRAC BC has a page on Pets, which includes information on allowing pets in rental units, pet damage deposits, and pet resumes. 

  • The Residential Tenancies section of the BC Government website also has some helpful information on pets and tenancies: 

For those who live in a Strata, it’s important to check your Strata bylaws; these may restrict what type of pets a resident can have or even restrict pets entirely. Check out the People’s Law School Q&A My building doesn’t allow pets. Is this legal? and the BC government website’s page on Strata pet bylaws for more information.  

Pets and Rights  

black and white dog in red and green sweater

Pippin Underfoot in a holiday sweater; a powerful source of emotional support

Pet law is an important aspect of human rights law. Check out the resources below for more information:  

  • CLAS’s BC Human Rights Clinic Blog post No-Pet Clauses and Human Rights discusses the accommodations tenants with disabilities are entitled to regarding service or therapy animals. 

  • CLAS’s follow-up post No-Pet Clauses and Human Rights and  Medical Information discusses what type of medical information one would have to disclose when requesting permission to have a support animal, based on a recent decision at the BC Human Rights Tribunal.  

Want to know more about how to certify a guide dog or service dog? Check out this page from the BC government website – Guide Dog and Service Dog Certification  

Pets and Family

three dogs in a car backseat

Donna Dixon, Shadow Moon, and Sunny Angus, anticipating their journey with bated (doggy) breath. 

Pets can be an important part of the family and it can be hard to figure out where they go when relationships end. This is an everchanging field of law, with some recent court cases considering the best interests of the pet to determine who they should stay with. Check out this blog post from YLaw for more information: How to Get Custody of My Dog in Divorce? BC Family Law  

Pets Out and About  

pug sitting on grass, tongue out

Rolo, all tuckered out on an outdoor adventure. 

Often, we take our pets outside with us, whether it’s to walk around the neighbourhood or hike up a mountain. When we do, we have certain rights and responsibilities to follow.  

People’s Law School has several pages that could be helpful for your patrons:  

It’s a good idea to check out your city or municipality’s bylaws regarding pets, which can generally be found on your city or region’s website.  

If your patron looking for more information after receiving a bylaw ticket, you can direct them to this page from the BC Government on Municipal Ticketing or this ticket solution explorer to find out about their options. 

New Print Resource Available

Many of these topics and more are discussed in a recent publication, new to the Law Books for Libraries list this year! Canadian Animal Law, written by local BC author and lawyer Victoria Shroff, covers the main issues in animal law and how it intersects with other areas of law, including family, criminal, housing, tenancies, wills & estates, and more.  

Keep an eye on our website for the new LBLL, Retention & Weeding list, and grant announcement. All coming soon!  

dog standing on grass in front of yellow flowersBlack dog with white chest standing in a yard

Willow & Perry on adventures of their own!