Byron Bay to be First in Australia With “Pets Are Welcome” Policy
ANIMAL WELFARE advocate Karen Justice is leading the way to bring in a Pets Are Welcome Policy to Byron Bay to curb the high number of animals surrendered because of housing restrictions.
“Sadly 36 percent of cats and dogs that end up in shelters and pounds are there because their owner can’t find pet friendly accommodation,” said Ms Justice.
“The horrifying statistic is 20,000 family pets per year are surrendered to the RSPCA alone because landlords say no to animals,” she said.
“As at July 2016 Australia’s major cities and surrounding suburbs have the following amount of “pets allowed rentals” as compared to total available rentals – Sydney – 2%, Melbourne 1%, Brisbane 8%, Darwin 5%, Perth 4%, Adelaide 4%, and Hobart 12%.”
“Renting in Byron Bay with a pet is almost impossible and in extreme cases people have ended up homeless because they can’t part with their pet.”
“I’m forming a Community Council to try and educate others about the benefits of having pet friendly accommodation.”
“I’m inviting real estate agents, strata management, and local council members to be part of this Community Council to put Byron Bay on the map for making a difference in animal welfare.”
“The Community Council can help re-educate landlords about the benefits of pet friendly accommodation and lobby the NSW Government to introduce strata by laws that welcome pets rather than discourage them.”
“Not allowing pets into homes only leads to dogs and cats unnecessarily being killed and their owners left distraught because they have lost a loved one.”
“I want Byron Bay to show the rest of Australia that it can be done – an across the board Pets Are Welcome Policy – to see a huge drop in animals left at shelters.”
“It’s a bold plan but something has to be done or more and more animals will be killed because a landlord won’t let them into their homes.”
Ms Justice said the benefits of pet friendly accommodation are :
- Saving Lives : Allowing pets into homes means owners don’t need to surrender them to shelters and pounds which means less animals are put to sleep.
- Health Benefits : There is scientific proof having a pet makes people happy and healthier.
- Rental Longevity : Tenants with pets tend to stay in rental properties longer saving landlords time and money rather than face uncertainty of securing another rental property.
Ms Justice believes if one place can do it then the rest of Australia might just follow.