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Animals truly are the best friend of humankind, and their health benefits cannot be underestimated. According to one analysis by the Guardian, dogs can even be described to have a magic effect – their beneficial impact on mental wellbeing and mental health is huge. When adults move into community living, whether through medical needs or to take advantage of beneficial rent and mortgage rates, animal friends can pose an awkward question. However, there are laws and regulations in favor of dog owners that are there to be taken advantage of – it’s all about knowing your rights.

Housing associations

The most common form of community living that adults will move into are housing associations. These are communities built around creating a pleasant environment for everyone there, based on the mutual understanding that well maintained homes equal better house prices and a better community spirit. Many HOAs ban pets, and they do have a legal right to do so. Where the line is drawn is in service dogs. New York law states that service dogs are allowed wherever they like, according to Nolo, meaning that HOAs are legally mandated to allow them, though this doesn’t extend to emotional support dogs. Accordingly, if your canine friend falls into the latter category, it’s important to research HOA laws before signing up. If the HOA is breaking their own rules, or the law, US News highlights the various legal paths available to homeowners.

Assisted living

Another common form of community housing, assisted living projects provide on-site care for people who cannot otherwise safely enjoy full independence. Once again, rules are dictated between different areas, but in general pets are allowed – and this is true in New York state. There are some considerations to be wary of. Assisted living projects often deal with individuals who have experienced significant trauma, and that could include with relation to animals including dogs. As a result, there may be a stricter level of control required with regards to the animal, or special arrangements may need to be put in place.

The co-living scene

An emerging part of the US rental scene is co-living. Rent is rising, as are property prices and, now, mortgage rates, and that’s led to more people looking to co-live with other individuals or couples. According to, this is one of the best ways to go when it comes to finding a place that’ll accept animals. Landlords are typically less accepting of the animals, according to experts, and that means people entering into community living through co-living arrangements are more likely to find a place for their animals. There’s an increased chance again with the advent of dog-focused households – and an opportunity for your pooch to make some friends.

It can be difficult to get your dog into a community living arrangement with you – but there are opportunities. Landlords and community owners are more allowing than they perhaps once were. Do your research before signing up to be sure.

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