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PETS IN POOL AREA

QUESTION: Can an association prohibit ANY pets from pool area? From swimming in the pool?

ANSWER: Associations can prohibit animals from pool areas EXCEPT service animals. If someone is blind and needs their guide dog to safely maneuver to a lounge chair, the association cannot prohibit the dog.

In the Water. An animal in the water is a different matter. From my review of applicable laws, it appears that service animals can be prohibited from entering the water for health and safety reasons. However, there may be an exception if the service animal has been trained to perform a specific task essential to its disabled owner's use of the pool and the animal does not pose a threat to the health and safety to others or to the sanitary conditions of the pool. Then it is possible that reasonable accommodation could be required.

Comfort Animals. If someone legitimately needs the emotional support of a comfort animal to use the pool, the animal can be brought into the pool area but not the pool itself. Only service animals properly trained to assist a disabled person to swim can go into the water. Even so, there may be reasonable restrictions imposed regarding protection of pool filters from animal fur plus proper sanitation.

RECOMMENDATION: It should be noted that requests for accommodation are not always legitimate. If someone claims to be disabled and makes a demand, associations should seek legal counsel. Associations needing legal assistance can contact us. To stay current with issues affecting community associations, subscribe to the Davis-Stirling Newsletter.

Adams Stirling PLC