The Sonia Show

Writer. Mocker. Beer drinker. Old movie watcher. Mother. Goober.

SF apartment owners: Give dogs a chance

12 Comments

Yeah, so, why do apartment owners hate dogs?

David and I are going to have to move eventually into a bigger apartment with the little spawn on the way, so we are casually checking the apartment listings in San Francisco. And, the no pet thing really pisses me off.

My dog, Homer, is not nearly as loud or messy as a kid, yet every apartment will allow a kid. My dog doesn’t write on the walls or bang toys on the hardwood floors. He doesn’t cry in the middle of the night. He doesn’t throw food around. Sure, my dog barks sometimes, but I suspect it’s not much louder than a baby crying at 3 a.m., or a 4-year-old losing his shit because you turned off “Yo Gabba Gabba.” Yet any apartment in SF would take us and our little apartment-destroying monster without a second thought. But, if I walked in with a nine-pound wiener dog who spends most of his time curled up on the couch sleeping, I would be either forced to pay a hefty pet deposit or shown the door while the landlord explains his “no pets allowed” policy.

If an apartment does allow pets, it’s usually cats. Cats, yes; dogs, oh hell no. WTF? Cats shit in your apartment! Sure, they use a litter box, if you’re lucky. My dog does his dirty business outside. Cats claw furniture, hang from drapes and smash mini-blinds. Other than get his nose prints on the window or rolling on his back on the carpet, my dog doesn’t really make a mess around here.

Sure, yeah, I know that not every dog is as well behaved, but not every tenant is well behaved, yet landlords still rent to people knowing the tenants will have to pay for any damages they do to the apartment.

All I am saying is give dogs a chance.

Come on, SF landlords. Look at this face!

Homer is a perfect tenant. Look how preppy he is in his sweater.

And while I’m on the subject of apartments and landlords, they are clearly delusional about what their apartment is worth. We are not, I repeat, NOT going to pay $3,000 a month for a two-bedroom apartment in Potrero Hill with tiny bedrooms, no closets, no storage, an electric stove and no laundry. You’re high. It’s laughable and greedy.

You know what’s sad? Someone will totally pay that. But, it won’t be us.

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Author: The Sonia Show

I'm a writer/mocker/goober/mother in San Francisco who likes to drink beer, shop, laugh and make other people laugh, podcast, watch old movies, feed my unhealthy obsession with pop culture, kick breast cancer's ass, wear orange and root for the San Francisco Giants, participate in general jackass-ery, talk about TV, eavesdrop on strangers' conversations, make nerdy “Star Wars” and “Simpsons” references, and post personal things about myself on the web for all to read, which makes me some sort of literary exhibitionist.

12 thoughts on “SF apartment owners: Give dogs a chance

  1. Come to the Dark Side (aka the East Bay)….

  2. Thank you for making me laugh EVERY day!! In the middle of a temper tantrum, your blogs come through and my mood changes instantly!! You are funny and witty and SUPER.

    • Candace, thank you so much for the sweet compliments. It’s so nice to know that other people out there enjoy the blog as much as I like writing it. I’m pretty sure it keeps me sane.

  3. Come on over to the Sunny Side of the Bay. Sure the East Bay isn’t SF. There’s not NEARLY the same amount of attitude and you can almost always park in front of your house….. 😉 All kidding aside, I remember the no pet pain and I fully agree with you on the cats v. dogs thing. Have you ever lived in a place where a cat has sprayed? Ugh. Much worse than having a dog.

  4. We recently moved down to Mountain View (don’t come to this dark side, it was strictly for the reduced commute time) with a 2-year-old and a cat and had the exact same experience and the same reaction. I remember coming up with 7 listings on Craigslist at one point and then, after unchecking “Cats OK” finding almost 40. And one landlord I talked to asked if my cat was declawed and I responded, “Um, no, declawing is illegal in California” (never mind that we just moved here a year ago). He got really huffy and said, “Well, then he’s just gonna be running around SCRATCHING EVERYTHING.” And while I acknowledge the issues with cats raised above, they’re the exception… seriously? Most cats sleep 23 hours a day. My cat is 18 years old. He’s not going to be scratching anything, much less running around.

  5. If landlords could legally ban babies they would.

  6. So true!! Trying to find a nice place that allows dogs is near impossible – we are starting to wish we would have not accepted jobs in Frisco . We may have to get rid of the dogs or find foster family – ugh.

    • Don’t give up, Bob! Keep looking!

      There are apartments that will except dogs out there, but you have to hunt. Is there a specific part of SF you are looking in? We got lucky in Glen Park. We saw several places that accepted dogs there.

      Also, if you are searching for apartments on Craigslist, don’t check the dog box in the criteria. Some of the listings say they will accept dogs but don’t check the dog box in their criteria.

  7. Blame rent control. We have a 3.5 yr old & a dog, and I agree w/ you regarding kids being way harder on an apt then pets. But legally, can’t discriminate. With a responsible owner pets are great, but w/ a poor owner a nightmare. An accident left uncleaned can ruin a hardwood floor & cost thousands to repair, far beyond the security deposit.

    But greater issue is rent control. We have a tenant letting his dog poop in the backyard & our hands are tied. Tenant w/ kids complaining loudly, it’s a health hazard, and despite knowing who is doing it we can’t prove anything so have no recourse. No ability to kick dog or tenant out or to bill charges for cleanup, so zero leverage beyond asking tenant to be a good citizen or cleaning it weekly ourselves. We could potentially be sued by *both* tenants if we screw up.

    And rents … You trying having an rental property you can only increase rents on 0.6% annually and tell me if you’d be willing to drop prices or just let the thing sit vacant. Again, we love our dog. And our kid. But in such a tenant skewed city we can’t afford to compromise.

    • I’m curious what kind of lease this tenant has. Let’s say we were crappy tenants who didn’t pick up after our dog, and we had a year lease. When the year lease was up, couldn’t the landlord present us with a new lease that includes language saying we must pick up after our dog or face eviction or fees or something?

      I guess it’s really the luck of the draw for building owners. You could easily have a tenant with kids that destroy things or make life unbearable for other tenants as you could with a tenant with dogs that destroy things and make life unbearable for other tenants.

  8. Rent Control applies to buildings built before 1979 or 78 where landlords have to obey the strict rent control guidelines. I am not sure how pets are addressed w/rent control units. But it does not seem fair to allow a person w/ a pet poop and not pick it up.

    I live next to a sidewalk where people drive their cars just to feed the pigeons. When they finish unloading the huge back of bird feed, they simply drive off. On this same side walk, there is always bags of garbage. Street cleaning is pathetic. Last I saw, there was animal feces on the ground.

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