California SB 1229: Pets and Rental Property

There is a bill currently in the California State Legislature that would prohibit property owners from requiring tenants with cats to have them declawed and dogs devocalized.

California SB 1229 was introduced by Senator Fran Pavley citing a trend toward increasing numbers of property owners giving preferential treatment to pet owners whose cats were declawed or dogs devocalized.  Pavley went on to state both procedures are permanent and a pet owner should not have to subject pets to these procedures to secure living space.

The bill prohibits property owners from:

  • Requiring tenants to declaw or devocalize pets allowed on the premises
  • Advertising property in a manner to discourage pet owners whose pets are not declawed or devocalized
  • Refuse occupancy to a person because of person’s refusal to declaw or devocalize pets

This bill does NOT prohibit property owners from having a “no pet” policy, but  rather is meant to keep them from discriminating against pet owners whose pets are not declawed or devocalized.

Violators of this bill would be subject to a fine of up to $1000 per animal.  The bill authorizes city or district attorneys, law enforcement, or any person harmed by a violation to enforce the bill to provide a strong deterrent.

Declawing, except in cases of medical necessity is prohibited in Australia, Brazil, Germany, Switzerland, Austria and the UK.  Devocalizing is illegal in New Jersey and Massachusetts.

The bill unanimously passed the Senate in May and will be presented to the Assembly this month.

Source:  State Assembly Bill Analysis


Written by Karen


Karen is Publisher of Fully Feline. She also owns a pet care business in Overland Park, KS called Joy of Living.