Can NY Landlords Restrict the Specific Breed of an Emotional Support Animal?

Landlords cannot restrict the specific breed of an emotional support animal, according to HUD GUIDANCE ON REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS UNDER THE FAIR HOUSING ACT RELATING TO ASSISTANCE ANIMALS

Pet rules do not apply to service animals and support animals. Thus, landlords may not limit the breed or size of a dog used as a service animal or emotional support animal just because of the size or breed but can limit based on specific issues with the animal’s conduct because it poses a direct threat or a fundamental alteration. The Fair Housing Act does not require a dwelling to be made available to an individual whose tenancy would constitute a direct threat to the health or safety of other individuals or whose tenancy would result in substantial physical damage to the property of others. A landlord may, therefore, refuse a reasonable accommodation for an assistance animal if the specific animal poses a direct threat that cannot be eliminated or reduced to an acceptable level through actions the tenant takes to maintain or control the animal (e.g., keeping the animal in a secure enclosure). To prevent emotional support animal lawsuits, view New York landlord attorney Robert Friedman’s seminar video or call him at 716.543.3764.