The Norman Transcript


October 31, 2013

Options for old dog



We are bombarded with pleas to save animals, but if one is a renter, this is a big roadblock. Just read the ads: “no pets” is often included. I found a rental complex that requires a $300 deposit for a pet, returned according to how the premises look upon moving out, plus $50 a month rent for said pet. These requirements are preposterous.

I know of a good tenant who had to euthanize his beloved 13-year-old cat but can’t afford to replace her because of the expensive requirements to do so. It is heartbreaking. This tenant is an asset to our complex, but he will move out when his lease is up.

— Concerned (name and address withheld upon request)

Dear Concerned: This issue cuts both ways. What is a landlord/rental property owner to do with irresponsible pet owners who do not clean up around the property, allow their dogs to bark constantly and leave stained carpets, chewed doors and scratched walls and floors?

The irresponsible have jeopardized the rights and needs of responsible dog and cat owners living in or seeking to move into rental properties.

I have sympathy for the uncounted numbers of elderly people and children and their families being denied the benefits of an animal companion. I appeal to all renters with animals to be responsible and to landlords to not engage in emotional and financial exploitation. One solution might be a rental agreement of immediate eviction if animal-caused damage is not quickly addressed. The same applies to legitimate claims from other residents.

Send all mail to or to Dr. Michael Fox in care of Universal Uclick, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106. Visit Dr. Fox’s website at

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