Keeping pets

If you live in a house, bungalow or ground floor flat with access to your own garden you can keep one dog or cat without asking our permission, on the terms set out below. If you live in any other type of property, you must get our permission to keep a pet.

If you ask our permission to keep more than one dog or cat (or one of each) we will judge each request on its own merits. This means we will consider things such as the type of home you live in and the size of your garden, as well as the breed, size and number of pets you want to keep.

Apply to keep a pet

Factors we consider when you ask permission to keep a pet:

  • The type of property you live in and the facilities available to you
  • The size of your garden or whether you have suitable open space nearby
  • The breed, size, number and temperament of the pets you are asking permission to keep
  • Whether the pet(s) will have special needs
  • What other pets you have.

If you live in a flat, we also consider:

  • Whether the number of pets you want to keep is appropriate to the size of the flat and the facilities available. We usually only grant permission to keep dogs and cats in flats if they have direct access to an outdoor space.
  • Whether you can promise that your pet(s) will get enough exercise, with good access to a safe and suitable exercise area outside the home.

Whenever we grant permission to keep a pet it is on the condition that the owner looks after it properly. In the case of cats and dogs this includes worming and regular flea treatment as advised by a vet.


  • We nearly always limit the number of dogs to one
  • We nearly always limit the number of cats to two
  • We do not normally give permission to keep exotic animals or farm animals.

Please see below for more information about keeping different types of animals.

  • Keeping dogs

    We will normally only consider allowing one dog. If you wish to keep more than one you must apply for special permission to do so.

    We also usually only allow dogs to be kept in homes with direct access to an outside space. Where you live in a flat with no direct access to a garden or open space, we will not normally give permission and would only consider it in exceptional circumstances such as a request to keep a registered guide dog or hearing dog.

    Where you ask us to consider exceptional circumstances we will take into account:

    • Whether the type of dog is suitable for the location and size of your flat
    • Whether the dog may cause a nuisance or risk to anyone in the immediate location
    • Whether you can promise that the dog will get enough exercise with good access to a suitable open space.

    All dog owners must ensure that their pets do not cause a nuisance or distress to others, or break the terms of their tenancy.

    • We encourage you to have your dog permanently identified by microchip or tattoo
    • You must not allow your dog to breed
    • In most cases we will allow you to replace your dog as long as your home is suitable
    • Anyone mistreating or neglecting their dog will be refused permission to keep ANY pet and be reported to the RSPCA.

    You must:

    • Never keep the following dogs, because they are banned by law: Pit Bull Terrier, Japanese Tosa, Dogo Argentina, Fila Brazeliero; or any other dog that the law regards as dangerous or out of control
    • Never breed or board dogs in your home
    • Never keep dogs on balconies or in any communal spaces
    • Never chain or tether dogs on any Hastoe owned land
    • Never leave your dog alone or unattended overnight or for long periods of time.
  • Keeping cats

    We usually only allow cats to be kept in accommodation with direct access to an outside space.

    • We encourage you to have your cat permanently identified
    • You must not let your cat breed
    • In most cases you may replace your cat as long as your home is suitable
    • Anyone mistreating or neglecting their cat will be refused permission to keep ANY pet and will be reported to the RSPCA.

    You must keep your cats under control at all times and make sure they cause no nuisance or distress to others.

    You must:

    • Never breed or board cats in our property
    • Never keep cats on balconies or in communal walkways.
  • Keeping small mammals

    Very small animals such as rats, mice, gerbils and hamsters must be limited to manageable numbers, and you must ensure they are suitable for your living conditions.

    Rabbits and guinea pigs should be kept outside the home. You must have access to an outside space where you can put a secure exercise space for them, protected from direct sunlight and predators.

    • You must avoid letting your pets breed by keeping same-sex or neutered animals
    • You must keep their home free from excess droppings.

  • Keeping birds

    You can keep small birds inside your home as long as their cage is large enough to allow them to spread their wings fully in any direction and they have enough space to perch. Ideally you should also let them exercise outside the cage, provided they can’t escape.

    • You must keep their home clean and regularly clear away droppings.

    If you want to keep aviary birds outside you must have adequate outside facilities. You must show that you can look after them properly and be able to demonstrate how you will prevent potential nuisance to people living nearby, for example early morning noise or rodent infestation.

  • Keeping spiders & reptiles

    We don’t encourage you to keep these types of animal because they need specialised care and living conditions. If you wish to keep a reptile or spider in your home you must show that you know how to meet the care and welfare needs of the animal, including providing a suitable environment. 

  • Keeping chickens, fowl and livestock

    We don’t encourage you to keep this sort of livestock as very few of our homes are suitable for their needs. If you want to keep livestock, you must show you have the right facilities and know how to meet their care and welfare needs and that the animals will not cause nuisance or distress to other people living nearby.

    • We will limit the number of chickens or fowl you keep
    • We will consult the RSPCA about any other livestock
    • You must not keep cockerels on Hastoe property.

Animal nuisance

Taking action

You are not allowed to keep any animals that, in our opinion, may cause nuisance or disturbance to anyone in the local area, including our employees and contractors.

You must make sure that any animal you keep does not cause a nuisance or distress to others or damage to our property.

We will take enforcement action against any tenant who:

  • Has not got our permission to keep their pet(s)
  • Has our permission, but does not look after their pet or pets properly
  • Has let their pet cause nuisance or distress to people living nearby.

Read more

Apply to keep a pet

If you would like to get our permission to keep a pet please fill out our application form.

  • Animal Welfare and Support Organisations

    Animal Trust

    Provide vet services for dogs and cats with free consultations.


    Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors

    Represents a network of experienced behaviour counsellors.


    British Small Animal Veterinary Association

    Official site of the BSAVA.


    Canine & Feline Behaviour Association

    Pet Behaviour Practitioners.

      • Applewood House Ringshall Road Berkhamsted Hertfordshire HP4 1RN


    Rabbit Welfare Association

    Association for rabbit lovers.


    Societies and Charities

    Battersea Dog's Home

    No dog or cat suitable for rehoming is ever put to sleep, however long it takes.

      • 4 Battersea Park Road, Battersea, London SW8 4AA


    Blue Cross

    Charity who find loving homes for abandoned or ill-treated animals and helping poorer people with vets' bills and providing pet food banks.

      • Shilton Road, Burford, Oxfordshire OX18 4PF
      • Phone: 0300 7909903 
      • Web:


    Cats Protection League

    Cat welfare charity.

      • National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Haywards Heath, RH17 7BR
      • Phone:  030000 12 12 12
      • Web:


    Dogs Trust


    International Cat Care

    Charity which promotes the health and welfare of cats.

      • Taeselbury, High Street, Tisbury, Wiltshire SP3 6LD 
      • Web:



    Hearing Dogs for Deaf People

    Charity for hearing dogs for deaf people.


    Peoples Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA)

    Cares for the pets of needy people by providing free veterinary services.

      • Whitechapel Way Priorslee Telford Shropshire TF2 9PQ
      • Phone: 0800 731 2502 / 0800 917 2509 
      • Web:



    Includes advice on campaigning, pet care, careers, and how to help this UK charity.

      • Web:


    Informational Resources

    Veterinary Directory

    Searchable directory to find vets in your area.



    Governing Council of the Cat Fancy

    Feline equivalent of the Kennel Club for dogs.


    Kennel Club

    Information and advice on dog welfare, health, training and breeding.

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