As a college student, I'm seeing more and more young people taking on the responsibility of a dog or a cat in their homes or housing. I am currently living in a duplex near the campus of Randolph Macon College and, sadly, we are not allowed to have pets. If I were, I would at least want to foster, if not adopt, a pet. After just spending a couple of weeks as an intern here at the Richmond SPCA, I can see past the stereotype of breed restrictions enforced by some apartment complexes and recognize that many of these animals would make great companions.
Within many apartment communities there are different breed restrictions, which creates a challenge when trying to unite an animal with a home, and just as importantly, keep the animal in that home. Pet restrictions can force animal guardians to make difficult decisions, such as parting ways with their beloved furry friend. Luckily, there are many pet friendly options in the Richmond area, and the Richmond SPCA has a tool that can help you find the right space for you and your pet.
The Pet Friendly Housing Guide is a great tool to use if you are searching for a new residence for you and your furry companion. This tool will also help to avoid having to surrender that pet, or adopting only based on breed. I'm currently in the process of updating our pet friendly housing guide. While I've noticed that there are fewer restrictions now, it can often be a struggle for pet owners who wish to carry out the committment they've made to care for a four-legged companion. Certain apartment communities such as Tobacco Row and Fulton Hill attempt to motivate pet guardians to move into their communities with more inclusive policies. Tobacco Row’s policy now includes dogs weighing up to 100 lbs. Beginning with last year’s Bark the Block Party, a benefit for the Richmond SPCA, the community has also waived the pet deposit for any cat or dog adopted from the Richmond SPCA.
Fulton Hill has an equally progressive policy at their Lava Lofts property in Church Hill, according to marketing manager Nicole Walters who explains that each dog is considered as an individual, regardless of type or breed. Potential canine residents that are typically in the “restricted” list are evaluated in a one-on-one meeting to determine suitability for the Lava Lofts community. Walters has seen first-hand the difficulties pet guardians can have finding acceptance for their companions. “This policy just allows us to not turn that person away based on the pet that stole their heart,” Walters said.
If you’d like more information about these pet friendly communities, please research your options in the Pet Friendly Housing Guide so that your furry family friend can accompany you to a new, happy home.
Macon Heikes was a communications intern at the Richmond SPCA this January. To read the biographies of our regular bloggers, please click here. Before posting a comment, please review our comment guidelines. Please note that our comment policy requires a first and last name to be used as your screen name.