BLOG – “Hello, we are a non-smoking and pet-free couple”: this is the beginning of the message that I constantly send to landlords by email when a home interests me. I realized that not having a pet is really a (sad) asset when you want an apartment.
In addition to promising them that their block will not smell of disgusting old cigarettes, I assure my future owners: their floors will not be scratched by small labrador claws.
Renters write everything they can to get keys to a place you know. Anything that can be an advantage over others.
Not having a pet is one. And I think so … sad.
I have always loved dogs. Maybe one day I will get one. Not now, of course. But maybe when I move again in five to ten years, who knows.
I will, of course, take care of that body and soul. That’s why I have no one now: I have neither the time nor the means. It must be a considered commitment. It’s not a small toy. It is a living creature that depends on me feeding it, taking it to the vet, training it, washing it and above all loving it.
Is goodbye really necessary?
I offer you a brief rhetorical story to express how heartbreaking it can be to separate a dog from its master. All that for an apartment.
Here is the scenario: we are in the future. I’ve had a dog for five years.
I have been in a pet friendly apartment for years. Everything is fine. So from one day to the next I fall victim to an illegal readmission. I’m on the street with Fido now.
I find myself a hotel that welcomes animals while I wait to find a new apartment. And there, the housing crisis that keeps biting me in the face. I can not find a dog-friendly apartment. Every time I get rejected.
Then I have to resign myself: I find housing without animals.
In the absence of being able to find someone to take care of my dog in my entourage, Pitou ends up at SPCA on the 1st.uh July.
With a heavy heart I leave him there, in a cage. I avoid crossing his soft and naive gaze, which follows me to the end. His tail bangs happily behind me: for him it is not a farewell. He does not understand.
I push the doors up to the building on rue Jean-Talon. Maybe I was a mother then too. Maybe I have a three-year-old daughter with me. She is inconsolable. I carry her in my arms to the car.
Fido will always be waiting for me. But I’ll never come back for that.
A very real story
This story, it never happened to me personally (and thankfully).
However, it is very real for many families, especially during the relocation season.
Only 4.2% of homeowners accept dogs in Quebec … even though 25% of Quebec households have at least one, reports the SPCA. And those statistics are for dogs only. For no less than 52% of the population has a pet, all species combined.
Even more sad? The number of animals left in the Montreal branch of the organization tripled in the months before and after the 1st.uh July. This number increases from 600 to 1600 per month during this period. It’s huge!
Maybe I should give up my dream of having a long-term pet.
The fear of the floor ruined by an animal potential that is too enthusiastic is very much present among owners. I see it just by searching the internet. Out of more than a dozen ads for rental housing that I looked through recently, I found only one where pets were allowed in the apartment. ONE.
For readers who are on the verge of being thrown out with their parakeets, hamsters or cats: Be aware that no pet clauses apply in Ontario or France. So at least 1uh July … you know where to move.
Who’s fault is it?
In an article from Have to published in 2021, the Corporation of Real Estate Owners of Quebec (CORPIQ) ensures that 25% of dogs are accepted in its members’ accommodation, while cats are accepted at 71%.
The aversion to animals comes mainly from the occupants of the buildings, shows a CORPIQ survey conducted in 2015 by Léger. No less than 63% of tenants surveyed said it is “inappropriate” to have a dog in an apartment.