Tenant snuck in cat, dog
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Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Anne [CA]) Mar 20, 2023 6:11 PM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by zero [IN]) Mar 20, 2023 6:40 PM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Hoosier [IN]) Mar 20, 2023 9:07 PM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Vee [OH]) Mar 20, 2023 9:17 PM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Anne [CA]) Mar 20, 2023 11:21 PM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Robert J [CA]) Mar 21, 2023 7:44 AM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by S i d [MO]) Mar 21, 2023 8:40 AM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Allym [NJ]) Mar 21, 2023 9:15 AM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Jim in O C [CA]) Mar 21, 2023 11:00 AM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Anne [CA]) Mar 21, 2023 1:14 PM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Anne [CA]) Mar 21, 2023 1:22 PM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by GKARL [PA]) Mar 22, 2023 5:45 AM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Or [MI]) Mar 31, 2023 2:26 PM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by CCC [MI]) Mar 31, 2023 2:27 PM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Jerry Morris [SC]) Mar 31, 2023 2:55 PM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Ralph [WA]) Apr 1, 2023 4:02 AM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Fred [VA]) Apr 1, 2023 8:44 AM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Wayde [MI]) Apr 1, 2023 11:12 AM
       Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Glenn [VA]) Apr 1, 2023 1:06 PM

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Anne [CA]) Posted on: Mar 20, 2023 6:11 PM

Hi all- dh and I bought our first and so far only rental, a duplex in Long Beach, way back in Nov, 2003. I can't tell you how helpful this board has been in the never-boring world of landlording. Love seeing a lot of the old guard still doling out wisdom, advice and humor.

Anyway, just did a walk-through with the back unit tenant, who has been a dream. Unit looks good, rent always in full and on time, no complaints almost ever. We finished the inspection and were making some small talk when he shared a few anecdotes about the front unit tenants (who moved in last April). Apparently, front unit tenants argue a lot, to the point of bothering the OTHER neighbors right next door to duplex. They have snuck in a dog and an unneutered cat ( I reviewed the lease and they stated no pets at time of rental- wife has said they may get a dog at some point- I said, no problem, but there is a $500 pet deposit and I approve breed.) There have been some unpleasant confrontations between front and back unit neighbors, too.

My question: the only evidence I have of the animals is noise complaint from back unit tenant, who said dog would bark a lot during day. And there was dog poop in front yard. I did not see cat- so how do I address this with the tenants? I want the unneutered cat GONE but the dog can stay upon payment of deposit.

With the other items, they are on thin ice.

This duplex has been continuously rented the entire 19 years we have owned it. This current nuisance tenant is the sister of a wonderful tenant I had a few years back. Their reports weren't great, but that isn't unusual in that particular neighborhood. I can't have them scaring away the new tenants who move into the back unit.

Thanks in advance for input, feedback, advice!


Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by zero [IN]) Posted on: Mar 20, 2023 6:40 PM

Your place. Knock on door and ask if they have pets. State that you saw the dog pile in the front yard and was curious. If they say no pets ask to go in. If they say no then give notice that you will be entering in 24 hours or whatever minimum time you must give.

You see the pets, give your legal notice of eviction. If they are close to end of lease give a non-renewal.

Your states laws are different than mine. I do MTM and will just say I am not renewing. I don't need a cause. That could save some hassle, but it is your place. If they don't follow your lease, boot em. --107.147.xx.xxx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Hoosier [IN]) Posted on: Mar 20, 2023 9:07 PM

I agree with Zero. And then you have a choice to be nice or mean. I'd make sure to get a hefty "non refundable animal registration fee" as "training" for trying to hide things from the LL. But if you want to play nice, you can keep the fee low and just tell them to start paying going forward.

Quote the lease section too that says "if tenant not paying for animals, then any animal found on the property will be assessed a $??? fee for each occasion on which it is seen on the property regardless of whether it belongs to the tenant or a visitor, as no guest animals are allowed even if kept outside."

You do have a clause like that, right? --99.92.xxx.xxx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Vee [OH]) Posted on: Mar 20, 2023 9:17 PM

Take a camera and dog whistle from pet-smart, blow the whistle and take a picture of the dog jumping at the window, or barking in the cage - knock on door and advise the dog watcher you have 30 minutes to return the animal to where it came from. you should have this addressed in your lease, I need photo vet records of required distemper shots, be added as interested party on renter insurance policy, before switching rentals over to short term (20 Days) we charged 200bux per animal to cover cleanup, exit flea treatment and wet mopping kitchen and bathroom weekly to help dissolve the animal stink. --76.190.xxx.xxx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Anne [CA]) Posted on: Mar 20, 2023 11:21 PM

Thanks! I am actually more concerned about the cat spraying the unit-had a tenant who had an undeclared cat that was "litterbox resistant." That was quite the cleanup bill. She's someone else's problem now.

I am heading up to unit tomorrow to clean vacancy- I will be on the lookout for the animals and documenting. The cat must go (according to neighbor, they let it wander around street so I don't think they care much for it, anyway.) The dog I will let them keep if they pay the $500 pet deposit but I will probably also require them to get renter's insurance if they do keep it.

They are on notice, for sure. We have a pretty good pool of renters in Long Beach, and this particular area has few rentals available. With them, it was more "the devil you know.." as they are related to my former A+ tenant. --76.91.xx.xx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Robert J [CA]) Posted on: Mar 21, 2023 7:44 AM

I did a final walk-thru with a tenant vacating an apartment in Los Angeles. As I walked inside, I smelled a fresh scent from a carpet shampooing from that morning. I never had a tenant clean their carpeting unless they are trying to hide something. So I pulled out my pair of 1930's gas pliers and began pulling back the carpeting from a corner of each room. Living room, dinning room, hallway, 1st and second bedrooms and closets. And you'd never guess what I found?

The couples cats used the carpeting as their personal pee depository.

In every room the pee went thru the carpeting, thru the padding and burned makes into the hardwood flooring.

I explained that these tenants would not be getting their deposit money back! They left and returned a month later serving me a law suit.

I found myself in Small Claims Court. The Judge was too busy reading a brochure on his next vacation than to listen to my explanation of withholding the tenants deposit. So I informed the Judge that unless he gets his eyes back on me and his ears open, I will be asking for a new Judge and reporting him to the State Bar Association for dereliction of duty.

The point the tenant maid was it took me too long to provide the cost estimate for repairs. I explained in court "what bull sit"! The very next day after the tenant vacated I pulled out all of the carpeting and got 3 estimates on the hardwood flooring repair. Then I scheduled the work ASAP and it took them 2 weeks to make the repairs, sand an seal the flooring. --47.147.xxx.xxx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by S i d [MO]) Posted on: Mar 21, 2023 8:40 AM

And after Robert J verbally dressed down the judge in his courtroom, he opened up with his Uzi and sprayed bullets throughout the room, sending the bailiff and other courtroom attendees running in fear....

Tune in next week for the thrilling conclusion!

Anyway, the key with pets is knowing your state laws and having a rock solid lease that addresses pets. So step 1: what does the law say? Step 2: what does your lease say.

Generally, pets must be allowed unless restricted by the lease agreement. Keep in mind, a lot of tenants these days will get their pets classified as ESAs (emotional support animals) once they get a whiff that the LL doesn't want or allow them, or charges a fee. Once they do that, you're out of luck.

So I wouldn't make it about the pets: I'd make it about damages and filth.

Dog poop is now allowed to pile up on the property. That is a sanitation issue. Start documenting with photos/video and send someone over to clean up the mess. Bill the tenants $100 per clean up. It doesn't matter if their dog did it or not. Messy yard = tenant gets the bill. They must keep their portion of the yard clean. If they say the neighbors are doing it, then that's a problem THEY need to discuss with the neighbors. Not my job to determine how the poop got there.

Schedule a maintenance visit where you go inside and LOOK and SMELL. That will tell you if kitty is using it as a litterbox or not.

Good luck!


Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Allym [NJ]) Posted on: Mar 21, 2023 9:15 AM

If there is an unneutered cat in there it must be a female as the males smell horrible. Give them a new lease at more money saying all pets must be neutered.


Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Jim in O C [CA]) Posted on: Mar 21, 2023 11:00 AM

My last not approved cat did $2800 damage not counting the 3 weeks it took to eliminate the cat pee odor. --99.23.xxx.x

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Anne [CA]) Posted on: Mar 21, 2023 1:14 PM

Going to board my ark in a minute and swim up the 405 to start tidying up unit (and make sure windows are shut!)

Robert- holy smokes, you have some stories! I would have loved to have been in that courtroom.

We have always allowed pets and I frequently hold my breath to see if the ESA issue comes up. Fortunately, it sounds like the ESAs in CA have to have proper docs including a record of the tenant seeing a doctor for anxiety that necessitated the ESA. But we all know people can get phony docs.

The yard is fenced in, so def tenant dog poop. And my future leases will include a poop cleanup fee at the low price of $100 per pile.

Sid, thanks for the right focus- damages and filth. Boy those animals can mess up a place. Time for an inspection. And time for a new, improved lease.

Thanks again everyone! --76.91.xx.xx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Anne [CA]) Posted on: Mar 21, 2023 1:22 PM

Just had to add:

One way I have kept a tight rein on breeds of dogs I rent to, is to tell prospective tenants that our mail carriers WILL NOT deliver mail to the unit if they feel there is a threatening dog ANYWHERE on the property.

My first back unit tenants "rescued" a wandering pit bull and kept it in the back yard. Front unit calls me and tells me they haven't gotten any mail in a week. I call Post Office and they tell me mail carrier feels unsafe at our address. I call back unit tenants and they tell me about unclaimed "rescue." I said, hey, the dog HAS TO GO or you don't get mail. That solved it. --76.91.xx.xx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by GKARL [PA]) Posted on: Mar 22, 2023 5:45 AM

Had a tenant sneak in two cats right at the inception of the lease this past November. I made them remove them and pay the fees per the lease. I also didn't renew their MTM. Trust was broken and once that occurred, I didn't want them in the place. Litter box was overflowing so a disaster was in the making. Apartment was newly renovated. --209.122.xx.xxx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Or [MI]) Posted on: Mar 31, 2023 2:26 PM

Robert robert robert.... So you had the last word at the court, but did you win the case? Sometimes better to be smart than right. I don't think you scared the judge as he is the king of the court and you depend on him. When you provoke him, he will not be on your side. You can complain, but threatening is never a good way to gain sympathy. --73.191.xxx.xxx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by CCC [MI]) Posted on: Mar 31, 2023 2:27 PM

We ban cats and we have a written list of dangerous breeds that we don't allow.

We are in a rural area, so I tell new tenants that I've been having a problem with strays lately, so please tell me if you have a guest with pets (which the lease requires written permission for anyway) because I SHOOT STRAYS and I wouldn't want to shoot your mom's puppy!

Approved tenant dogs are listed by name in the lease. And I now get a photo while evaluating applications (amazing how many ways people will try to pass off a pit bull!) --174.240.xxx.xx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Jerry Morris [SC]) Posted on: Mar 31, 2023 2:55 PM

I charge ($500.00) deposit for small dogs, up to two pets if f I see the pups.

Each pet is ($100.00) per month added to rent.

Never, absolutely no cats, or any other type animal, reptiles, fish, etc.

Tenants willing to pay this fee for their lap dog usually take care of them.

If they sneak an animal in, EVICT ! --98.124.xx.xxx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Ralph [WA]) Posted on: Apr 1, 2023 4:02 AM

Here's my pet clause.

24. Pets: No animal, fowl, fish, reptile, and/or pet of any kind shall be kept on or about the premises, for any amount of time, without obtaining prior written consent and meeting the requirements of the LANDLORD. TENANT shall not ďpet sitĒ or allow visitors to bring pets on the property. If pets are found on the property, it shall be assumed that they have been present from the commencement of the tenancy and the tenant agrees to pay a non-refundable pet fee of $500.00 per animal plus $150.00 per month as pet rent retroactively to the beginning of the tenancy and LANDLORD may at his discretion terminate the Lease or require the removal of the animal(s).


Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Fred [VA]) Posted on: Apr 1, 2023 8:44 AM

Landlords need to stop using the word PETS and only use ANIMALS --37.19.xxx.xx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Wayde [MI]) Posted on: Apr 1, 2023 11:12 AM

I mage thousands of dollars a year off of pets. I just added in the lease a clause! If a pet is found anywhere on the property that hasnít been approved, rent increases $85.00. This is not a pet fee itís a rent increase for violating the lease. --174.243.xx.xx

Tenant snuck in cat, dog (by Glenn [VA]) Posted on: Apr 1, 2023 1:06 PM

Does anyone have a clear lease term such as RALPH(WA) that specifically list terms for ESA and Service animals. Early on it was so broad that ESA anything was allowed because everyone was afraid of HUD's unlimited ability to challenge any restrictions. My understanding is that the law only applies to dogs now and they must have specifically trained to perform a service to be considered a service animal. Early on we had several people submit the $98 "internet doctor's note" claiming exemption of all pet fees and deposits.

We treat ESA as pets with deposits and rent and Trained Service animals free of both rent or deposit. This hasn't been an issue but I realize without specific lease clauses it can be challenged. --172.56.x.x

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