B.C. landlord threatens eviction for dog owner

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

A Burnaby, B.C. landlord has issued letters to approximately 30 tenants at a 14th Ave. apartment building, demanding that they submit canine stool samples, says a recent article from CBC News. The dog owners, one or two of which are guilty of leaving dog excrement in the building’s stairwell on two separate occasions, could face eviction if they refuse to comply.

PooPrints, a DNA matching service for apartment and condominium communities, will help the landlord identify the canine culprit and owner.

A letter to the potential offenders, which CBC managed to get a copy of, stated that “refusal is not an option, but rather an admission of guilt and reason for immediate eviction, as the law is on our side.”

Despite the landlord’s assertion of legal implications, the Tenant Resource & Advisory Centre noted that, although a convicted owner could be evicted, the only way eviction is legally binding is if the lease agreement uses specific language regarding pet excrement in building common areas.

In an exchange with CBC writers, strata property and residential tenancy lawyer Lisa Mackie echoed the sentiments of the Tenant Resource & Advisory Centre. “It is frustrating for landlords when it’s evident one tenant or more are breaching terms of a tenancy agreement,” says Mackie. “Unfortunately the onus is on the landlord to establish that a tenant or multiple tenants are in breach of their tenancy agreement.”

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