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Arizona Bill Would Stop Landlords From Imposing Dog Breed Restrictions

Arizona lawmakers have proposed a bill that will prohibit landlords from turning away tenants with certain dog breeds. Under current law, Arizona landlords have the right to refuse to rent out houses based on the type of breed a prospective tenant owns.

Arizona Senate considers bill to prevent landlords from enforcing dog breed restrictions on renters

Currently, Arizona has a law in place — the Bipartisan Senate Bill 1439 — that permits landlords to turn away tenants who own Pit Bulls, Rottweilers, and German Shepherds.

Most landlords believe these breeds are aggressive and can cause property damages and liabilities. Furthermore, a majority of insurance companies in Arizona have breed restriction requirements, that, in turn, force landlords to enforce restrictions on tenants.

On Monday, Feb. 12, lawmakers proposed a bill to lift these dog breed restrictions, as reported by AZ Central. If passed, it will become illegal for an Arizona landlord to discriminate against tenants who own breeds deemed “aggressive.”

Not everyone is in support of this proposed bill, though. Most animal welfare groups in Arizona are advocating for the breed restrictions to stay in place to protect public safety.

Nevertheless, the Arizona Multihousing Association (AMA) is championing the implementation of the bill. AMA believes that doing away with the dog breed restrictions will make housing more accessible for dog owners.

Commenting on the proposed policy, the CEO of Arizona Pet Project, Leanna Taylor, told AZ Family,”[We are] already dealing with massive housing crisis. When you start adding additional requirements like size and weight and breeds, you are narrowing down housing opportunities.”

Taylor further stated, “There is no data that shows one breed is more dangerous than the other.”

The proposed bill has sparked varying opinions from state officials. Some have expressed concerns over the unforeseen consequences of lifting the dog breed restrictions.

According to Senator J. D. Mesnard, a Chandler state representative, enforcing the proposed law may result in landlords completely refusing to rent out houses to tenants with dogs, regardless of the breed.

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