COACH's Pop Quiz!

Q: Do fair housing rules for assistance animals supersede state, city, and local municipalities' regulations that ban certain breed types?


A: Yes, federal fair housing requirements generally outweigh any state or local breed restrictions.

Although HUD hasn’t specifically addressed the issue, its general rule is that breed restrictions don’t apply to assistance animals. Although you’re allowed to deny a reasonable accommodation request when that specific animal poses a direct threat to the safety or property of others, HUD says that it must be based on an individual assessment of the threat posed by that animal based on its behavior—not fear or speculation about the harm that it may cause or evidence about what harm other animals have caused.

To learn more, see the Coach’s June 2018 lesson, “Facing Your Fair Housing Fears and Everyday Dilemmas: Further FAQs & Follow-up.” In the June lesson, we followed up with FAQs from the Coach’s April 2018 lesson—and a related webinar presentation—on facing your fair housing fears and everyday dilemmas. Both lessons, and a link to the webinar, are available on our website at