A landlady who’s hosted a veritable menagerie of animals in rental properties over the years says she’s so fed up with the resulting mess and damage that she won’t take any more tenants with pets.

She’s had problems with virtually every pet she’s agreed to home: one tenant kept a cat locked in the bedroom that caused extensive damage to a carpet and wallpaper, while another family kept a dog in the conservatory leaving a big clean-up job and bill when they moved out: the window sill was chewed, poo was ingrained in the door, while the floor was warped and soaked with urine.

The landlady, who is reluctant to reveal her identity for fear of reprisals, reports that cockatiels have pecked wallpaper off a bedroom and even fish have created huge bills, she explains: “The tenant managed to break a large fish tank, smashing water and fish all over the laminate flooring, wrecking the floor.

“I’ve also had problems with a tortoise that chewed the woodwork and skirting boards!”

Her comments follow the news that Adur & Worthing Councils have launched a new dog training scheme for homeless people to prove they can make responsible tenants.

“I’m a pet-lover and have dogs and cats,” she tells LandlordZONE. “But while I feel very sorry for any homeless person with a dog or other pet, I’m sick of the damage caused and filth left by tenants with pets who say they’ll look after properties.

“I’ve probably spent thousands of pounds over the years paying for repairs that pets have caused to carpets and walls.”

She adds: “If they introduce a bill to force landlords to take tenants with pets, I’ll have to put the rent up, maybe by £25 a month per pet to cover additional wear and tear.”

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