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All Victorian tenants, including public housing tenants, are now allowed to keep a pet in their rental home.

Last year, the Victorian Government announced reforms to make renting fairer for tenants, including new laws on pets and renting. These came into effect on 2 March 2020.

Tenants now have the right to keep pets, provided they obtain their landlord’s consent first. For public housing tenants, this is the local housing office. Under the new laws, consent for a tenant to keep a pet cannot be unreasonably refused.

If the local office does not approve the pet, tenants can make an application to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) within 14 days from the date the pet request form is received. VCAT will then decide about the pet.

In the case of an assistance dog, consent cannot be refused at all.

Tenants who request to keep a pet at their property, should:

  • Comply with local council by-laws regarding the pet
  • Prevent the pet from causing any damage or nuisance behaviour at the property. 

For more information about keeping pets at your property, contact your local housing office.

More information about keeping pets is available on the Consumer Affairs Victoria website.