Today, a large part of the world’s population living in urban centers decides to share their home with one or more dogs. However, there are still many frequent doubts of the tutors about the ordinances in force about the presence of dogs in public spaces, including those related to dogs in public elevators.
Dogs in public elevators: is there a regulation in Spain on this matter?
Sometimes we talk about the benefits of living with dogs for our physical and mental health. But we cannot forget that adopting a pet also implies responsibilities and challenges, especially when we live in flats and need to take into account certain norms – official or understandable – of social coexistence and mutual respect.
In this sense, one of the keys to avoiding neighborhood conflicts is to know the rules for getting on dogs in public elevators. While it is true that for pet lovers, this situation seems perfectly normal, the truth is that not everyone is willing to share this closed and reduced space with pets.
But preferences and opinions aside, is there a regulation that determines the conditions for using public elevators with dogs in Spain? Although it may be disappointing, the answer is: no! There is no national framework law that specifically talks about the presence of dogs in elevators in neighborhood co-properties.
Horizontal Property Law
In Spain, the law on horizontal property, published on July 21, 1969, includes all current regulations regarding housing and joint ownership. However, this regulation does not specifically talk about the possession of pets in buildings, much less prohibit the permanence of dogs in public elevators.
As expected, the absence of official regulations usually entails certain complications for neighborhood relations. Unfortunately, there are few times that we see co-owners facing prohibitions or penalties for using their building elevators in the company of their dog.
Can a neighborhood board prohibit the presence of dogs being public elevators?
In the absence of a framework law on the possession of animals in neighborhood joint ownership, neighborhood boards may issue their own internal regulations or statutes. However, the problem appears when the norms approved by the neighborhood community become abusive or contradictory when they infringe on the individual right of each owner.
For example, no neighborhood board can prohibit a co-owner from adopting a pet. However, if the presence of this animal implies physical or moral damage to the other co-owners or to the common heritage, it is possible that the neighborhood board may resort to a cessation action to limit this inappropriate behavior of the dog or its guardian.
Something similar happens when we talk about staying with dogs in public elevators. In general, it is understood that neighborhood communities should not prohibit the use of elevators to our dogs.
After all, this technology is as important to them as it is to us, especially when they reach an advanced age and no longer have great mobility.
However, there are certain aspects that can lead a neighborhood board to propose that dogs can only use the stairs in buildings. For example, the inappropriate behavior of an owner (allowing or not collecting the needs of your pet), or health conditions of some or several co-owners (allergies, dermal problems, phobias, etc.).
How to avoid neighborhood problems by using elevators with dogs?
In general, this type of problem with the use of elevators in neighborhood communities occurs with a particular neighbor. In these cases, it is very important that we maintain empathy and interpret this situation calmly and rationally.
Not all neighbors can be forced to enjoy the company of dogs or other pets. In addition, there are those who, for health reasons, cannot really remain with a dog in such a small space that lacks ventilation, as is usually an elevator.
In any case, it is advisable to maintain a peaceful and supportive behavior, which allows the other neighbor to have a preference when using the elevator. Also, always remember to request a copy of the statute in your building to know the rules and conditions in force in your neighborhood community.