My Condo Association Is Demanding DNA Sample From My Dog

Dave and his wife live in a condo complex in Northern Virginia. They also own a dog. Now, because of new a rule by his condo association, they and anyone else who owns a dog has 30 days to provide a DNA sample of their canine companion.

According to the letter Dave received from his condo association [emphasis is ours]:

As part of the registration process, dog owners must pay a registration fee to be determined by the Board of Directors, and which may vary from time to time as necessary. The Association will use these fees to defray the costs of enforcement of this policy and the rectification of damages and wear and tear caused by dogs within the community. The Association will provide each dog owner with a kit designed for the purpose of taking a DNA sample of the dog for identification purposes. Dog owners are required to obtain and use the kit to take the DNA sample in the clubhouse in the presence of the On-Site Manager. The Association will forward those samples to a special company for storage and, if necessary, further testing.

So not only are they requiring condo owners to register their dogs. The association also doesn’t trust dog-owning residents to take the DNA sample on their own, lest you provide them with DNA from your goldfish.

Why are they doing this? The letter only says “for identification purposes,” but we’re guessing the condo association was inspired by this New Hampshire apartment complex which required doggie DNA so it could determine whose pooches were pooping in inappropriate places.

“Because some people do not clean up their dog’s mess, they now want mandatory DNA testing of all dogs,” Dave writes to Consumerist. “Failure to do DNA testing will result in the removal of your dogs. This is both disgusting and intrusive… My question to you is: can they seriously implement this and get away with it? If I was told from the start that this would be a mandatory system, I would have NEVER moved in.”

We’ve written to the management company for the condo complex to ask the specific reasons behind the DNA demand and also why the registration fee for dogs is both unspecified and variable. If they respond, we will update.


Edit Your Comment

  1. lvdave says:

    THIS! is why I will NEVER live anywhere these flippin’ nazi HOA have any say.. I swear, you cannot make this s&&t up…..

    • SeattleSeven says:

      I said the same thing… Which is why I joined the HOA board of directors. An offensive step before any defense is required on my part.

    • Sarahlara says:

      It’s a difficult issue, but what can they do?
      Here, the dog owners who fail to clean up have essentially robbed everybody else of use of the lawns. You used to see people on nice days sunbathing, doing tai chi, playing guitar, etc, but now the place is just covered in dog waste, despite numerous notices and other measures.

      • ChuckECheese says:

        It seems it would be easier and cheaper to station cameras than to do dog-feces dna testing.

    • Clevelandchick says:

      Totally agree. I would never in a million years buy a condo for that reason.

      • majortom1981 says:

        Condos are not the only things with HOA’s anymore. Most new housing developments have HOA’s . ITs very hard to find a new house that does not have one.

        • Charmander says:

          There’s got to be some with reasonable rules. At least I hope.

          What kind of people want live in these places that go around snooping, taking photos and complaining to the board? They must be horrible people to be neighbors with. Ugh.

          • BBBB says:

            “There’s got to be some with reasonable rules.”

            There are lots of them, but they don’t make for exiting columns.

            You won’t see these as Consumerist items:

            * I planted a tree in my front yard and nobody complained.
            * I got a new dog and the HOA didn’t come around to demand DNA samples.
            * My daughter put a Pokemon sticker on her window and I didn’t get a fine from the HOA.
            * I left my car in the driveway overnight by mistake and didn’t get a citation from the HOA.
            * I got pulled over by the highway patrol and the officer gave me a warning about a missing taillight, told me to get it fixed soon and said “have a nice evening.”
            * My taxi driver found out I was a student and he turned off the meter half way to my destination.

            My view is that a HOA is fine as long as the rules are clear and everyone in the development explicitly agreed to them when they bought the home. [I say explicitly because the realtor and the HOA should go over the rules before the sale is finalized.]

            The problem is when the rules change (or get reinterpreted by an overzealous board) and you are in the minority when you oppose it.

            To make a wild guess
            – 30% of HOA are friendly and reasonable.
            – 30% are strict but fair and will try to work things out with homeowners.
            – 30% are strict and have the attitude of “rules are rules”
            – 9% are run by a small group of totalitarian power freaks
            – 1% are run by totalitarian power freak psychos.

          • James says:

            Even if they have reasonable rules NOW it doesn’t mean they won’t change them later.

    • Bent Rooney says:

      I think this calls for the old “flaming bag of DNA” trick.

    • maxamus2 says:

      Wow, only tood first post to get the “nazi” reply.

    • alana0j says:

      I have heard so many HOA horror stories…when I finally do get a house I will damn sure not select one under the jurisdiction of an HOA. You can’t tell me what color I can or can’t paint my house, what kind of lawn ornaments I can and can’t have or whether or not to have a vegetable garden. I understand they want to keep the neighborhood looking nice, hence keeping house values up, but most of them take shit way too far. I can’t customize my apartment and have very little space to grow things; once I finally own my own place I plan to make it every bit my own.

    • Aliciaz777 says:

      Where I live, it’s pretty much impossible to find an apartment, condo, townhouse or housing community without a HOA. The only way to not have to deal with one is to buy your own patch of land and build a house on it. Not a lot of people have that kind of money in today’s economy. I grew up in upstate NY, so when I moved to where I am now I was not used to having a HOA and being told what I can and cannot do with my property. My husband and I finally have our own home but we have a stupid HOA. Here’s some of the rules they enforce, just off the top of my head:

      1) The gate in the backyard MUST have a beige mesh covering. Any other color is not acceptable. I have a small dog who can fit through the gate so I put a wooden doggy gate in front of it. Within 48 hours I had a letter, pictures included, of my gate and was told to remove it or else.

      2) No flowers in the front yard, only plain green bushes no taller than 9 inches. I planted roses and was told to pull them up, or else. Yep, pictures were included with the letter.

      3) I had DIRECTV installed and my husband was going to spray paint the cord that hung on the side of the house on his day off, which was the very next day. Literally THAT SAME NIGHT I had a letter, with pictures, stating we had to paint the cord the color of the house, or else.

      Theres so much more, but you get the idea. It seems this HOA goes around taking pictures of people’s property, just looking for rule breakers. I can’t stand it. I can’t have roses but it’s ok for the neighbor kids to play in the street in front of my house every day screaming at the top of their lungs? They kick the rocks in my front yard into the street and I’m the one getting letters telling me to clean them up. There’s a park in this community right around the corner but these kids insist on playing in the street. I can only assume its because one of the kid’s mother is on the HOA board (she’s also my neighbor).

      As soon as we have enough money saved up we’re selling this house and moving to Los Angeles where it’s a lot easier to find a home with no HOA. The funny thing is, where I grew up, our neighborhood had no HOA and people kept their homes and yards in perfect condition. We all took pride in our neighborhood and didn’t need to be told what to do. I think the people on these HOA’s get off on bossing people around, like they have some power tripping superiority complex.

      • alana0j says:

        WTF? Ok I agree with the Nazi remark. Everyone’s house must look the same or else…wow. And no flowers?! Forget all that nonsense

      • shepd says:

        If you’re pretty certain the kids are children of an HOA board member, fight fire with fire. Clearly your house is now in perfect compliance with the rules, so should those children. Call the police and ask them to come and give out jaywalking tickets. Hound the police, they will eventually do it if you make enough of a stink about it.

        All of a sudden, those HOA board members will hate you like anything. That’s when you have an opportunity to explain WHY it went so far, and why you will continue to take it further until they call a truce.

      • Mr. Bill says:

        Stick a few dozen political signs up for revenge. They can’t stop free speech.

        • unsmith says:

          They can if it’s clearly delineated in the HOA documents and you willingly signed saying you’d abide by them.

    • BurtReynolds says:

      In Northern VA, you don’t have much of a choice. Basically you can choose from 1) existing developments with an entrenched mafia of stay at home moms and retirees, or 2) a new development where you hope the builders don’t screw the residents over too much before they hand over control to the homeowners.

      Like SeattleSeven said, my neighborhood is going to gain control pretty soon and I am debating if I should run for something just to make sure it doesn’t get dominated by people who want to mandate what kind of mulch I use. So far, it seems like most of my neighbors could care less about the HOA though, which is a good thing in my book.

  2. SkokieGuy says:

    And what is the cost to the association to DNA test errant poop to determine the culprit?

    Will vindictive neighbors dig through the trash and empty poo bags in public spots to frame their doggie owning neighbors.

    Will there end up being a canine poo-offender registry?

    • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDave‚Ñ¢ says:

      It’s mostly a scare tactic. If you know your doggy DNA is on file, you are less likely to leave it around.

      • Charmander says:

        And who wants to live in a place that resorts to scare tactics? Not I.

        • Difdi says:

          Would you prefer living in a place that is covered with dog crap to the extent you can’t walk anywhere without stepping in it? Some places really do get that bad.

          • Charmander says:

            Honestly, I probably wouldn’t buy in an area where homeowners care so little about their neighbors and their own lawns.

            I’d so some research before I purchased a home in a certain area.. I’d scope out the neighborhood beforehand and look for things like cars/rusted machinery left on lawns, in driveways, whether or not people maintained their lawns and kept their houses in good condition, etc. You can tell a lot about neighbors just from these things.

    • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDave‚Ñ¢ says:

      Crap, hit the wrong button. Also, poop that has been bagged and thrown out looks vastly different than freshly deposited scat. Most dogs naturally leave what can be classified as a Type 2-3 on the Bristol Stool Chart/Scale. If you bag it, then dig it out of the the trash, and pretend to leave it like it was freshly deposited, it’s going to look like a Type 5-6.

    • Thorzdad says:

      “And what is the cost to the association to DNA test errant poop to determine the culprit?”

      I’ll bet you they charge the fees back to the guilty family.

    • smhatter says:

      You make a good point. I wonder if anyone will just show up at a local dog park, pick it up, and dump a large assortment on the HOA staff’s doorsteps. After they do all the testing on that, without anyone to charge for it, they may change their minds (or just raise some more fees, you can never really tell).

  3. tmitch says:

    I support the HOA in this. As a former HOA president, it was extremely frustrating to have homeowners thumb their noses at the rules they AGREED to when they purchased their home, by allowing their pets to defecate on the lawns and other common areas.

    Dog owners are some of the most unreasonable people I have ever known. There are dog owners who actually think the rules designed to keep landscaping and common areas nice for EVERYONE do not apply to them. Yes, they are that incredibly selfish.

    So I support the HOA.

    • Doubting thomas says:

      Read the article, this is not a case of agreeing to the rules and not following them, this is a case of an arbitrary new rule and fee being implemented after the fact.

      • TuxthePenguin says:

        Almost every HOA document (I’d wage 100%, but I’ll be conservative) has a section that allows the board to develop new rules. You know, like how the Constitution allows amendments. You’d be stupid to not have that ability.

        What concerns me is the DNA… I can see registering the dog, but DNA?

        • FrugalFreak says:

          So You BUY into “Heaven” but you are really selling your soul and signing up for “Hell”?

      • tmitch says:

        I read the article, thank you.

        If every dog owner followed the rules they agreed to in the first place, the Board of Directors of a homeowner’s association wouldn’t NEED to vote in new rules (which they are legally allowed to do, by the way – perhaps you should read a copy of an HOA’s bylaws some time) to combat the problem of lazy dog owners who refuse to clean up after their pets.

        It becomes the problem of the BOD to deal with when dog owners refuse to follow the rules. It’s as simple as that.

      • blueman says:

        Not arbitrary; it was voted on by the condo association — whose rules you agree to follow when you move in. Don’t like it? Get people together and take over the condo association.

    • vyper says:

      Seriously, I wish the article listed where exactly this is because it’s A SELLING POINT.

    • snarkysniff says:

      I have an HOA and although I would never buy a house again within one, I would support this as well. I have 2 dogs and I am sick of my neighbors dogs shitting all over the place. Mine are rarely out front for more than a few minutes and if they are and they take a crap even in my own yard I immediately clean it up. My neighbors on the other hand are a whole different story. They are completely unreasonable people and think that everything I try to tell them is a lie. I do think though a fair amount of the crap around is also the cats that for whatever reason I still can not understand are not required to be leashed or anything. They are free to wonder, destroy vehicles and crap everywhere.

      • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

        most cats bury their poop. cats that don’t are often tomcats, not neutered and unlikely to be peoples’ pets. generally the only cat who leaves unburied poop is the cat who has beaten all the other cats in the area for the dominant spot so all the others bury theirs as a sign of submission.
        buried cat turds are rarely the litter problem that fresh steaming piles of dog crap are

      • Charmander says:

        But aren’t there local city laws that deal with this? I know that if my neighbor’s dog poops in my yard on a continuous basis (luckily, it doesn’t) I can call my city’s animal control hotline and they will send someone out to investigate/ticket my neighbor.

        I hardly think that an HOA has to be involved.

      • NickRayko says:

        We’re all free to wonder, even cats.

    • Lucky225 says:

      Except for the fact that, you know, they did NOT agree to provide a god damn DNA sample of their dog and this an ADDENDUM, *NOT* what was originally agreed to. *smh*

      • Eyeheartpie says:

        You know what else they agreed to when they signed the Condo Association paperwork? They agreed to abide by any future rules and regulations passed by the Association.


    • njack says:

      You sir are an idiot. I too am a former HOA president and I am also a dog owner. I understand both sides of the fence.

      On one hand you have the HOA and the majority of the community who actually cared. On the other hand you have the bad apples of the dog owning group. Most dog owners are actually responsible and clean up after their pets, but as with any group of people, there is the small percentage that make the rest of us look bad.

      This particular HOA is going over the top and ultimately it’s going to cost the people living in the community more in their monthly HOA fees for maintaining a database of pet DNA. Fortunately it just takes people in the community that have had enough to get something like this revoked.

      Also, are they going to DNA test the cats in the community? I’ve seen far more people clean up after their dogs than I have ever seen go clean up after their cats, considering I’ve never seen a single person clean up after their cat. Cat’s carry more diseases than dogs, such as toxoplasmosis.

      • tmitch says:

        Name calling. Now that’s mature. We were having a civil discussion up to this point.

        Well done.

      • rpm773 says:

        You sir are an idiot. I too am a former HOA president…

        Former? But politics seems to be one of your strengths.

      • Stella says:

        Great point about cats. While dogs are generally walked by their owners–giving them a chance to clean up after their pets–cats are often allowed to roam free. I have no pets and my next door neighbor has an indoor cat, but there are close to half a dozen felines that roam through our shared yard on a daily basis as if they owned the place.

        • The Cybernetic Entomologist says:

          “as if they own the place”

          They’re cats. As far as they’re concerned, they DO own the place.

      • Kuri says:

        Odds are the current chairman owns a cat.

    • Dallas_shopper says:

      I can be spotted on warm balmy afternoons walking my Maltese, swinging a black plastic bag of dog shit in one hand. I don’t like him pooping in other peoples’ yards but if he does, I’m ready with a roll of baggies that is clipped to his leash. I check my baggie situation before I leave the house with him; if I’m running low, I slip another roll of them into my pocket because you never know.


    • Velvet Jones says:

      I hope there is a special place in hell for you HOA lovers. Imagine yourself spending the rest of eternity surround fluorescent yellow houses with purple doors and yards full of pink flamingos. Oh yeah, and garbage cans that are left at the curb for days on end.

      • FrugalFreak says:

        LOL, With HUGE American flags in front yard on poles and basketball goal in the driveway beaters on the street and Brown grass..

      • ectreece says:

        No florescent yellow, taxi cab yellow with blue trim. Yes I did and my neighbor who had complained to me for weeks that I was lowering property values because my house needed painting shut up and moved. Several others in the neighborhood have told me it looks bright and cheerful and more houses in the area are now yellow or bright safety orange (that one is on a dead end tha t is not well lit).

    • lovemypets00 - You'll need to forgive me, my social filter has cracked. says:

      “Now, because of new a rule by his condo association,”

      New Rule

      Meaning, not in place when they moved in. So they’re not thumbing their nose to a rule they agreed to when they moved in, they’re thumbing their nose at the new rule imposed by the HOA.

      If it were me, I’d borrow a black lab that looked like mine and give his or her DNA.

      • Eyeheartpie says:

        When you sign up for a domicile under an HoA or a Condo Association, you agree to the stipulation that they can create new rules. So the OP really did agree to this new rule.

        • Billy says:

          I don’t know why this is so hard to understand for people.
          If they don’t like the law, they can vote the bastards out and a new board can change the law. That’s the way it works.

          • Rachacha says:

            The board can not create or change rules without first notifying the members (homeowners) and providing them with an opportunity to comment on the proposed rule. If the OP does not like the rule, he should have protested before the rule was put into place. If the board enacted such a rule without feedback from the members, it can not be enforced.

            The OP should ask the board for documentation that supports the fact that all members were properly notified and provided with an opportunity to voice their opposition to the rule.

            • Billy says:

              I’m not saying that the board should avoid its own procedures (or procedures prescribed by law) when passing a rule. If a board doesn’t follow the correct procedures, then obviously the rules can be voided.

              But that’s different than saying that the board can’t make new rules at all.

      • wrjohnston91283 says:

        There most likely has been a rule against animals relieving themselves on the grass of condo property or not being cleaned up after. This is the rule that is most likely being violated by a small group of owners.

      • Excuse My Ambition Deficit Disorder says:

        I was thinking the same thing, but I was going to go with a mastiff…even though I own a 25lb dog. I don’t see anywhere in the rules where it said it had to be a dog you own. Maybe, rent a new dog every week…or even a horse.

      • xl3ill says:

        Why would you borrow another dog? Then wouldn’t you be invading THAT dog’s privacy? I know it’s not because you fail to clean up after your dog and don’t want to get caught. That would be violating the rules (not to mention common decency), right?

        • lovemypets00 - You'll need to forgive me, my social filter has cracked. says:

          Because I clean up after my dog when he poops on someone else’s property. That’s why I carry plastic bags with me when he goes somewhere. And borrowing someone else’s lab? Just to mess with them and their silly new rule.

    • Sorta Kinda Lucky Soul says:

      Read his comment history — Don’t feed the troll.

    • FrugalFreak says:

      HOA people are the most unreasonable I’ve ever met. Control freaks IMO

    • Admiral_John says:

      When we were looking to purchase our first house, every listing my agent sent me prompted the same question from me… “Is it subject to a HOA?”

      Eventually every listing I got started with “No, it’s not subject to a HOA.” I didn’t go through the hassle of buying a house to have some outside group of people to charge me dues and enforce whatever rules they come up with.

    • Kestris says:

      Except it sounds like these are NEW rules, not existing rules that were in place when they moved in. Or if they were existing, they weren’t mandatory at the time, but are now.

      And not all dog owners are unreasonable.

      • Eyeheartpie says:

        So what if it’s a new rule? When you sign the Condo Association paperwork, you agree to follow all future procedurally passed rules. If you don’t agree with it, get it changed, or move.

        • Rachacha says:

          there usually is a process where new rules need to be presented to and voted on by the members. Depending on the state and the nature of the rule, the change may need to be approved my the bank holding the mortgage and insurance company for every property in the association. HOA boards can make all the rules they want, but making rules that are legal an enforceable under you covenants and by laws requires approval by the voting members of the association ( not just the board)

          • Billy says:

            New rules usually have to pass the board’s consideration, not the entire property’s.

            There are some things in the Declarations that might need approval of a majority of members (which, I think, is what you are describing), but not the rules.

            • Rachacha says:

              My experience is that it varries. An HOA where I own property is trying to modify the rules to restrict the number of vehicles that homeowners can have (we have one home that has 9 vehicles associated with it, 3 commercial and the rest personal). We have to get approval from 75% of the homeowners

              Point being, check your governing documents and ask if it is unclear how the new rule was approved.

              • Billy says:

                I’m not sure how that’s any different than the original statement, “When you sign the Condo Association paperwork, you agree to follow all future procedurally passed rules.”

    • Kuri says:

      If you move into a neighborhood controlled by an HOA, you might as well be renting “your” house.

      • jesusofcool says:

        This is what I don’t understand. With a HOA that is actually sincerely stringent about rules, what’s the difference between owning and renting. You’re paying extra for someone else to have some responsibilities in exchange for being subject to their rules. Personally, I’d rather rent – it seems like you have greater recourse to contest crazy stuff like this.

        • BBBB says:

          “With a HOA that is actually sincerely stringent about rules, what’s the difference between owning and renting.”

          You still get to own the home and control everything not prohibited by the rules. You get to build equity (adjusted by the benefit/loss of the market). When you rent, you get the restrictions in the lease, plus the uncertainty of rent increases or the landlord can decide not to renew the lease. Or any of the psycho landlord issues we’ve read about in Consumerist.

      • Sparkstalker says:

        You don’t even have to be in an HOA – try not paying your property taxes.

    • Jawaka says:

      I can see both sides. There’s got to be a lot of people out there who love living in HOA communities because otherwise they would probably have all died off by now. I guess that some people just like knowing that their neighborhood is controlled and will never really change all that much.

      However, it’s definitely not for me or many others. I just don’t understand why a person would move into a HOA neighborhood if they didn’t want to deal with this stuff.

      • Eyeheartpie says:

        It’s an availability issue. If I want a house that’s a reasonable distance from work, then I’m stuck with getting an HoA-controlled house. I COULD, but then I’d have a 1.5 hour one-way commute each day to work. I’d rather deal with the headaches of the HoA on occasion than waste 3 hours a day sitting in a car yelling at traffic.

      • madanthony says:

        certain types of housing, like condos and townhouses, tend to have HOA’s because there tend to be common areas that need to be maintained but are neither private property nor municipal property. They also exist as a sort of compromise so developers can build but pass the costs of maintenance onto the homeowners instead of the town/city/county.

        And HOA’s aren’t all evil. I wanted a townhouse, so dealing with a HOA was pretty much a given, but the fees mine charge are substantially less than others in the area (30 a month vs 100+) and the board is pretty laid back.

    • vizsladog says:

      I’m going to S**t in your breakfast!

    • xl3ill says:

      I live in an urban residential area (read: densely populated). I park on the street. Today, as I was getting in my car, I stepped in poop that was lying in the grass directly next to my car. This happens weekly! This one was fresh, resulting in my tracking it into the car and rubbing it into the carpets before I even noticed. My car smelled like poop the entire ride to work. F**#! And I know I will be spending at least an hour today cleaning the car and my shoe.

      All this because some lazy a$s didn’t pick up after their dog. I am totally in support of this measure by the HOA; in fact I have thought that my city should have the same requirement.

      As for the people saying this is “invasive,” I really don’t see where you come from with that opinion. Invasive to whom? You? You are telling me you have a deep privacy interest in your dog’s DNA? Are you saying it’s invasive to your dog? Are you F’ing kidding me? Do you really think taking the DNA sample is going to cause Fido some sort of mental distress? Really? Fido doesn’t even know what DNA is.

      On top of all that, as people have pointed out, a condo association is a democracy. If the residents are against it they can have it overturned. The argument that the COA is “invading privacy” because it wants your dog’s DNA is just ridiculous. Stop, think, and shut up.

      • Firethorn says:

        On top of all that, as people have pointed out, a condo association is a democracy.

        Uh, I’m going to have to disagree with this. Condo associations are more typically formed along corporate lines – one condo, one vote, not one occupant, one vote. If somebody, such as the managing company, owns a number of properties, they can end up with a controlling interest.

        • Mrs. w/1 child says:

          Depends on what state you are in. I would be surprised if it one unit one vote anywhere. In IL ownership is not one unit one vote – it is based on percentage of ownership established by the developer. For example, a person living on the 42nd floor with a lake view in a three bedroom has a larger undivided percentage of ownership in the Association than a person living on the 4th floor in a studio that faces the parking garage wall. A corporation can own 4 studios and not have as much of a vote as a person who owns one large unit.

      • Charmander says:

        Doesn’t your city have a scoop your poop law? And a leash law?

      • bubbledumpster says:

        I read this as “densely poopulated”.

    • Excuse My Ambition Deficit Disorder says:

      I think tmitch meant to say just the opposite…

      I support the Dog Owner in this. As a former Dog Owner, it was extremely frustrating to have the HOA thumb their noses at the rules they AGREED to when they purchased their home, by allowing their HOA to defecate on the lawns and other common areas.
      The HOA are some of the most unreasonable people I have ever known. There are HOA who actually think the rules designed to keep landscaping and common areas nice for EVERYONE do not apply to them. Yes, they are that incredibly selfish.
      So I support the Dog Owner.

    • daemonaquila says:

      This is why I would never move into a place with a property association and the uptight twits who like it. I am very glad there are gated communities for such people to lock themselves into and keep the rest of us safe from them.

    • BurtReynolds says:

      In my neighborhood’s common areas, the local kids leave more crap around that no one picks up than any of the dog owners do. As the unfortunate person who can look out his window at the main common area, I regularly see garbage, bike helmets, sweatshirts and other junk left behind by someone’s unsupervised “little angel”. Meanwhile I pickup after my dogs.

      • Mrs. w/1 child says:

        So support the return of the right of restrictive covenant. Before over reaching fair housing laws and such, HOA’s were established to restrict membership of a community. For example, age restrictions, income restrictions, religious restrictions, or racial restrictions.

        Now since the Boomers are perfect precious snowflakes of joy (and a large demographic) they have the laws on their side for age restricted communities (55 and older) but you can’t live in an age restricted community for people with no children (all residents over the age of 21 or some such).

        While everyone was becoming hysterical about restrictive racial covenants they threw the baby out with the bath water and now HOA’s have to be nazi’s since they can’t restrict who moves in (and has dibs on your huge financial investment as interst in the community is based on percentage of ownership) in the first place. All they can do is run around plugging holes in the levee with fingers trying to maintain a nice “community” filled with people who all have diffrent ideas of what a pleasant community is.

        HOA’s are a bad deal not matter what – no real power to address the things that matter, tons of power to address the things that really don’t.

        I pay a massive premium to live in a large city in a neighborhood that is full of people I share interests with. (We like urban living and cultural activities so we really can’t live in the Edward Scissor-hands burbs.) Our neighbors are for the most part nice to live around with no HOA and in spite of ridiculous fair housing laws. Don’t get worked up about children, you knew they were going to be there before you moved in. I don’t move into (or next to) government subsidized housing and complain about the crime – you knew that was already going to be there.

    • nodaybuttoday says:

      I wish these rules would also apply to parents and their children. Unfortunately there aren’t rules about unleashed children.

  4. snarkysniff says:

    I dont see what the big deal is. Give them the sample.. as long as you clean up after your dog then you dont have anything to worry about (and yes I own two dogs).

    • Doubting thomas says:

      How about the new fees that the HOA can change whenever they want to?

      • Cosmo_Kramer says:

        A drop in the bucket of the cost of pet ownership.

        • crispyduck13 says:

          Please. This is not an inherent cost of pet ownership. This is a ‘give us more money and control so we can feel big about our anti-poop campaign’ fee.

          • Sarahlara says:

            There’s not really a cubic yard on our landscaping at my condo (in the same area as the OP) that doesn’t have 2-3 droppings, despite a lot of efforts on the part of the association. It’s unfortunate that it comes down to micro-management, but a lot of people here just don’t care.

            That said, I doubt this would fly if challenged in court, but I can understand the frustration.

            • Chris says:

              Cubic yard? All the trees have dog excrement up in their branches? :-)

              I think you mean square yard, but that’s still a lot. I don’t know how you can live there. I don’t think it would be possible to walk a short distance without stepping in it – an area the size of a small bedroom, 12 ft by 12 ft, would have 32-48 pieces in it. Amazing!

      • snarkysniff says:

        They can change the fees at anytime anyway. If he doesnt like it I suggest that he go to the board meetings and try to get on the board to change it.

      • Cor Aquilonis says:

        ^ THIS! This is why I won’t buy a house in with a condo association or HOA/POA/whatever.

      • Matthew PK says:

        They can’t. Fees are incredibly difficult to levy and collect. Furthermore, if you have problems with the HOA and fee structure you have the ability to vote and serve on your HOA board.

        • Nunov Yerbizness says:

          Hmm, my co-worker in the boring, dark, decidedly non-luxury 1990-ish condo, where they recently levied a “special assessment” of $50,000 per unit, might disagree with you.

          The “special assessment” was to fix leaking roofs and gutters on all of the buildings in the complex. Panicked, multiple residents actually put their units up for sale rather than pay the assessment.

          An assessment like this can happen at any time.

    • Three Foot Roo says:

      In addition to charging ridiculous fees, I suspect owners will suddenly find themselves in fined/kicked out/whatever when the HOA decides you’re a danger because they now have proof your mutt is 1/28th husky or whatever breed the news decides is “dangerous” this week. This nearly happened to me.

  5. nybiker says:

    I can’t wait until one of the CSI shows does an episode specifically dealing with this.

  6. MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

    Rather than trying to make it mandatory, they should have just said that the cost of any cleanup incident that doesn’t match a registered dog will be divided among the owners of unregistered dogs in the complex. After all, the point is that all residents are bearing the costs now, so the choices boil down to 1)either keep the status quo, 2) pay for closed-circuit surveillance and try to fine those responsible, or 3) do DNA testing to find those responsible.

    • Eyeheartpie says:

      If the dogs are unregistered, how will the HoA know who to charge the fee to?

      • MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

        To clarify, when I said unregistered I meant un-DNA-tested. Where I live, all cats and dogs have to be licensed, and unless you’re paper-training your dog to crap indoors, it’s a lot harder to hide a dog.

  7. Marlin says:

    YOU live in a HOA you live in a HOA.

    One of the many reasons the first question me and my wife asked when looking at houses is “Is there a HOA?” If the answer was yes we moved on.

    Its our choice to what house we buy so we choose. If you are already in a HOA then don;t complain, it was your choice. When stuff like this happens as it seems those that complain rarly if ever go to board meetings let alone run for them. First question I ask is when was the last time you went and the excuses start coming out on why not.

    • DrMcFacekick says:

      Pretty much every house/apartment/condo/townhouse within a 50 mile radius of Washington DC has an HOA. It’s unavoidable. Unfortunately, there’s no choice to be made when living up here.

      • MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

        Not true. Less than 10 miles from DC there is plenty of farmland and rural areas with no HOAs. We live in an area of MoCo that was developed in the early 1970s and there’s no mandatory association here, just a block association that collects $5/year to maintain the landscaping around the sign on the main road.

      • Marlin says:

        I live in NoVA and don’t live in a HOA. There are options, I know first hand.

      • Shinchan - Please assume that all of my posts are sarcastic unless indicated otherwise says:

        I live inside the Beltway, 10 miles from the edge of DC. I’m also 1.5 miles from a Metro station and 1 mile from a future station. No HOA here.

        You aren’t looking hard enough…

        • BurtReynolds says:

          Did you buy it in 1990 before the rising housing prices here far outstripped the pace of wages?

          This area if full of “I found a house close to my job and near transit, why can’t you?”, then they reveal they paid $200k 20 years ago for their now $700k home in Arlington and wonder why a 29 year old can’t live there too. If only I was in a position to buy real estate when I was 9.

          • Shinchan - Please assume that all of my posts are sarcastic unless indicated otherwise says:

            2BR-1BA single family homes on 1/4 acre of land can be had for $300,000 in the neighborhood. It’s safe, walkable (walking distance to Trader Joes and Whole Foods) and in 2013 it will be between stops for 2 different Metro lines. I could knock my house down today, spend $200-250k to build a new 2500 sq ft home and end up with a $700k property if I felt like dealing with the major disruption to my family’s life that it would cause.

            We paid ~$400k at the beginning of the bust, if we had waited a couple of years I could have bought the same house for $330k, and no it’s not a dump.

            Also, Fairfax County schools FTW!

  8. ducktownhusker says:

    The HOA can take a hike.

    Seriously, who would turn down free fertilizer, anyway?

    • Lethe says:

      As someone who doesn’t appreciate stepping in dog poo – I would.

      • kosmo @ The Soap Boxers says:

        Especially when it’s the same dog every day. Saw the woman several times, but never could get out the door fast enough to ask her to clean up after her dog.

        Hasn’t been a problem for a while. I had nothing to do with her disappearance. (I assume she moved).

    • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDave‚Ñ¢ says:

      Dogs are mostly carniverous, Carnivore poop is not desireable, and smells. Prey poop, which is usually herbivorious, and is very light in odor is different.

      No, I will not spell check.

    • Sarahlara says:

      There’s a lot of bacteria in it, including e.coli. You couldn’t let your kids play on the lawn here. And, as I said in a different post, the service to clean it up is pretty expensive.

      • OutPastPluto says:

        If dogs have free access to that area, then it’s not safe for kids anyways.

        It’s an HOA. If it’s part of the yard that’s visible to your pod people neighbors, then you likely don’t want any kids (or your pets really) there. You’ve probably employed some harmful chemicals in order to comply with HOA appearance requirements.

        It’s an HOA. It’s not really your front yard. It’s “their” front yard.

    • Chipzilla says:

      Hey, go google toxoplasmosis and come back to me…

  9. Cat says:

    This is the kind of thing that happens when Kramer is elected condo board president of Del Boca Vista.

  10. blogger X says:

    Is it THAT serious that they’re going to test the poop amongst doggie DNA samples? That sounds expensive!

  11. CubeRat says:

    I suspect this is not legal, even if the board votes to approve it. The owner should check the CC & Rs and maybe check with the state and/or lawyer.

    In CA a HOA cannot ban dogs or cats (I think you can have 2 of each). They can ban certain breeds. My HOA had a similar problem, but we just added a ‘clean-up’ fee of $5/month per pet owner in the association. It doesn’t matter what type of animal you own, interestingly enough, it worked. One owner didn’t want to pay the fee and got rid of there animal, including a duck, parrot and dog, and the problem dissappeared.

    Does anyone know how much it costs to get a doggie DNA sample? (I don’t & I’m curious)

    • anime_runs_my_life says:

      I lived in a townhouse for several years in California and each time the president of the HOA saw me or my ex bring in either kitty litter or cat food from our cars, she’d scream at us that we weren’t allowed to have pets. When we’d ask where it says in the CC&Rs, she’d get this sour look on her face and slam her door as she went inside.

      We never did get into any trouble. I think she just wanted to bitch at someone.

    • George4478 says:

      >>including a duck, parrot and dog

      I think I saw them walking into a bar….

  12. SporadicBlah says:

    I have dogs and I WOULD support this. I hate uncontrolled pets and owners who don’t clean up after them in public areas. (personal property excluded)

    • SmokeyBacon says:

      So you are ok with it if they are crapping all over someone elses property – because that would not be considered public property. As someone who has dogs crapping in her front yard, and as a person who doesn’t own a dog, I have to say that it pisses me off that people allow their dogs to do it and don’t clean it up in both public and private areas.

      • Cosmo_Kramer says:

        I think they meant it’s ok if you don’t clean up after your dog in your OWN yard, anywhere else is not ok.

      • SporadicBlah says:

        Since you didn’t see it the FIRST time: (personal property excluded)

      • SporadicBlah says:

        If I had neighbors dogs shitting in my yard I would start delivering it back to them in creative ways. Maybe scoop the shit up and place it on their front porch. Toss it in their driveway. thats another good location.

      • BurtReynolds says:

        This is why I only walk my dogs in the common areas of the neighborhood. It does bother me when people walk their dogs along the front of the houses (and a couple times left me something to pickup). Plus dog urine can cause brown spots on grass. Apparently I am the most considerate dog owner on my block. My Rottweiler could really kill some grass if I gave her the chance.

  13. qwickone says:

    I’m not sure how I feel about this. I always pick up after my dog, but have noticed a number of other people don’t and it makes me seriously mad (not to mention it’s gross). Out neighborhood even has those stations with bags for you. At the same time, this seems intrusive, which I really don’t like. Is there a better way?? If you pick up after your dog in the first place, we wouldn’t have this issue people! (Not directed at anyone in particular)

  14. Pasketti says:

    I’d be tempted to borrow a dog that looked similar to mine.

  15. umbriago says:

    I’m not in a HOA, but I am a HO, and there’s only one thing that really angers me about the behavior of passers-by, and that’s their inability to clean up after their damn dogs.

    I’m not to the point of following them home and crapping in their lawn. It’s an amusing idea but it’s not how I’m supposed to act, as I understand it.

  16. Tardis78 says:

    “This American Life” did a story about this back in 10. This really isn’t anything new here. Though I don’t agree with this, when you live in a place that as an HOA you have to live by their rules rather than you own.

  17. EnergyStarr says:

    easy work-around, submit the DNA of someone else’s dog.

    • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDave‚Ñ¢ says:

      “Dog owners are required to obtain and use the kit to take the DNA sample in the clubhouse in the presence of the On-Site Manager. “

      Unless you bring in another dog, not likely to happen.

  18. crispyduck13 says:

    When I first read the title I figured it was for keeping records that could be tapped to identify dogs that bit people or other pets. Then I get to the pooping bit. Jesus, wouldn’t it be cheaper to just set up a CCTV system so they can monitor everyone’s comings and goings and clandestine doggy fecal sessions? How much is it going to cost the association to get poo evidence tested? Judging by how many errant piles I see in my mom’s townhouse community I’d assume they’d go broke trying to track down the perpetrator.

    • InsertPithyNicknameHere says:

      There’s no reason for them to go broke. See, if you don’t clean up after your pet, you have to pay a fine. That fine would simply have to be set high enough to cover the cost of the testing, and the HOA breaks even. Of course, they’ll set it higher than that, so they can cover the cost of actually collecting the fine, and make some profit.

  19. notovny says:

    Clearly, they wish to use the DNA samples to create a genetically engineered superdog, as chronicled in the Emmy-award-winning documentary, “Arise, Dogpentor, Arise.”

  20. Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

    Every time I get pissed off at the lack of ordinance enforcement in my city and wish to myself that I lived somewhere with a HOA, I really need to think about this article so I can come to my senses.

  21. kursk says:

    This isn’t a rogue HOA issue, it’s a condo. So for all intense purposes we’re talking about an expensive apartment management issue.
    It’s their property, so they make the rules. Done. There are questions about the fees yes but when you live in an apartment or a glorified apartment you follow their rules.

    • Misha says:


    • majortom1981 says:

      I live in a condo and its not their property. The inside of my unit is all my property. I can do what i want to the inside of it. The HOA and board of managers is responsible for the outside.

      The complex as a whole votes on the HOA and board of managers. In an appartment complex you have no say. In condo complex you do have a say.

      My condo complex its run by people we elect. if you do not like how its run you can run for the board yourself.

      • Nunov Yerbizness says:

        When you own a condo, basically what you own is the wall paint inwards, and the responsibility to fix a bunch of sh*t you will never own.

    • Charmander says:

      ……intents and purposes….

      although I suppose purposes can be intense! LOL

  22. eddison72 says:

    “Failure to do DNA testing will result in the removal of your dogs. This is both disgusting and intrusive…” You know what else is disgusting and intrusive? When I have to see and smell your dog’s pile of feces slowly deteriorating in the lawn that we share. When I can place my own poop in our yard and let it slowly deteriorate, then you may do the same with your dog’s poop. Don’t like it? Pick up after your dog or live somewhere else.

    • kobresia says:

      Great summary of the problem at hand.

      It’s really a shame that rules like this have to be made because a few dog owners are just –that– irresponsible that they can’t be bothered to clean-up after their pets, but it’s not remotely unreasonable to take this sort of step if people are fouling the common area. It’s just another Tragedy of the Commons when selfish people treat such places as their own and ruin it for everyone.

  23. DrMcFacekick says:

    Welcome to NoVA! Enjoy your stay!

    • sean says:

      Exactly what I was thinking! So typical of the area. I remember when PWC wanted to ban POSSESSION of all motor vehicles that weren’t road legal.

  24. Blueskylaw says:

    Easy way around this. Get a dog, have the HOA take the DNA
    sample then return the dog and get another one that looks like the old one.

  25. Sarahlara says:

    They’ve been doing this in Germany, I think, for years.

    As someone else who lives in a condo in that area, I can attest that very few pick up after their dogs, even though it’s a county law and HOA rule. I know this because my own dog (who I did clean after) liked to eat what they left and she had a wealth of opportunities. It made for a lot of vet trips because our vet was worried about what she might pick up in eating that.

    Our place hires a service occasionally (Dooty Calls, I think is the name), but it’s too expensive to use it regularly, plus it does nothing to stop the offenders. We also send out notices every few months and yet still, many fail to clean after their dogs.

    It really is a big problem here. I can see why this particular condo association has gotten frustrated.

  26. JohnDeere says:

    unlawful search and siezure???

  27. shepd says:

    I have no problem with this. Anyone choosing to live in an HOA deserves exactly what they get, especially considering they attract exactly the kind of people who WANT to interfere in others lives.

    Of course, I *do* repair my car in my driveway, and I’m proud of the fact that my neighbours are not complete douches that they would care about it (I am generally quiet with it–I pick decent times to bust out the air tools–and generally don’t bother them).

  28. markvii says:

    How, pray tell, does one get one’s dog to poop on command, as well as indoors (presuming the dog is housebroken) so the steaming sample can be provided IN THE CLUBHOUSE to the on side manager?

    • axhandler1 says:

      They only need the DNA, which can be easily obtained through the use of a oral swab. No pooping involved.

  29. momtimestwo says:

    I agree with this test. I watched a lady let her dog shit in the yard across the street from my house, then just walk away without picking it up. And she was carrying a pooper scooper! It’s because of lazy, stupid people like this that we need stupid laws like this. I’m tired of dog crap in the yard. I wish our HOA had this law. Maybe if I knew who they were I’d suggest it.

  30. RoadDogg says:

    As both a dog owner and someone whos yard as other dogs pooping on it, I support this new fad. It will save me from having to pile up everyone elses dog crap in the street so they can step on it next time they walk by.

  31. GMFish says:

    This is both disgusting and intrusive…

    Then find someplace else to live. Problem solved.

    If I was told from the start that this would be a mandatory system, I would have NEVER moved in.

    Really? You wanted them to start off with asking for your dog’s DNA? Nothing about availability, pricing, security deposits… seriously?

  32. BigDragon says:

    Why do these people have dogs in a condo setting? Condos are for cats, not dogs. Go live somewhere else more appropriate for your dog.

    As someone who lives in an HOA-controlled townhouse community I can say that I absolutely hate everything they do regarding parking, but I would love to have a dog DNA rule. People just don’t clean up after their dogs. It’s particularly bad on the walking trails that go into the woods and on the outskirts of playgrounds. I’ve called several people on not cleaning up after their dogs and the most common response is that it’s disgusting to clean up (that’s the one that shows up after you press them on not having a plastic bag with them). You should have thought about that before buying a dog.

    Good for this condo association to try to do something about their local problem. I think they should back off if and only if the dog owners set up some sort of neighborhood poop watch. If they would police themselves and make sure not to foist the dog crap problem on other residents it would be ok. My experience with urban dog owners in this region tells me they’re actually “dog people” as crazy about their pets as that crazy monkey lady from several years ago. They got a dog because they didn’t want to deal with diapers that come with a real baby. No way they’re going to be responsible and clean up what comes out of their pooch. Condo association has no choice but to address the problem.

  33. Arcaeris says:

    I’m torn on this one. On one hand, I live in a crazy ass HOA where they impose harsh rules and are total assholes about enforcing them in the meanest way possible.

    On the other hand, the board is all dog people and so you have NO enforcement of dog related stuff, like shitting everywhere or keeping them on leashes (which are in the rules).

    I don’t think it’s unreasonable for them to ask for a DNA test so they can identify offenders. If you want the privilege of having a dog, then you need to take responsibility for that dog’s behavior.

  34. dolemite says:

    Yeah…no. I’ll never ever live in an area that requires membership to a HOA or “condo association”. My house, my property, my family, my pets, and you can shove whatever rules and regulations where the sun don’t shine.

  35. dullard says:

    I currently live in a residential development with an HOA. Previously I lived in an area without an HOA. Without the HOA we were continuously picking up dog droppings from inconsiderate neighbors who felt it wasn’t their responsibility. With the HOA dog droppings are rarely a problem.

    While some HOAs can be difficult and overbearing, others can make life better for all residents. The HOA for the area in which I now live is in the latter category. While many of the rules are quite strict, the association exercises judgment in determining how far to go with enforcement. Despite there being a rule, if no one is bothered by a particular activity and the Board of Directors gets no complaints, people are left alone. If there is a reasonable complaint the Board acts. The result is a pleasant place to live that is well kept and most residents don’t feel the Board is overbearing.

    Are there those who take advantage? We have a few and the Board acts upon those situations. But for the most part, the residents are left alone.

    I consider our HOA a big plus.

    • Kuri says:

      At least people are left alone. I suppose you lack those neighbors that sit at their window and look out for things to report or stand there with a stopwatch so they have a reason to report you.

      All the ones we looked at sucked. One got on a man’s case over flagpoles in front of a model home he moved into, another refused to let you have a pickup truck in your driveway because to them it counted as a work truck, and since my dad is a trucker now, he wouldn’t be able to come home often.

    • shepd says:

      Sounds like a great way to stop your neighbours from doing something you don’t like that isn’t against the HOA. Don’t like the noise your neighbour’s contractors make when they fix his house? It’s okay, you have the dirt on them–their mailbox is pink and you filmed them swapping a flat on their driveway once.

  36. quail says:

    There are irresponsible dog owners out there. Agreed. There’s also fascist anti-dog people out there as well. The two should be locked in a room together and leave the rest of us alone.

    The only part I don’t like about all of that wording is that the association can charge whatever they feel like for the DNA testing and the registration. Without it spelled out specifically in the bylaws what goes into determining the fee, then in a few short years dog owners could be paying extra for common lawn maintenance just because it’s felt they ‘use’ it more.

  37. mrhappydude says:

    i’m ok with this, i’ve lived in an apt complex that had unusable lawn space since dogs went wherever they pleased with owners never cleaning up

  38. Almighty Peanut says:

    problem is, i lived there for nearly 5 years and they JUST instituted this. we’re also not allowed to walk our dogs ON the condo property now. which begs the question… if they’re testing to see who is leaving dog doo, then why can’t we just let them go on the property and pick it up?

  39. FrugalFreak says:

    Move in a hurry!

  40. Alliance to Restore the Republic of the United States of America says:

    Eff HOAs. I have enough problems with bullshit local politics without dealing with bored retirees making up rules to play house in.

  41. mikesanerd says:

    Unbelievable. I’d say the key point to emphasize to other tenants in the complex is that “If I was told from the start that this would be a mandatory system, I would have NEVER moved in.” (me too!). This means that the value of your property has just gone down. Convince people that this is effectively costing them lots of money, and you’ll get more supporters. Get a quorum of followers, then mutiny.

  42. Nyxalinth says:

    I’m going along with this being a bs reasons. All dogs chew, etc, unless properly trained, and DNA won’t matter. I did think briefly it was to screen out potential dangerous breed mixes (in their opinion, not mine) but to find the poop culprit is beyond silly. Mind, if you clean up after your dog, there’s nothing to worry about.

  43. gttim says:

    If it is not in the original documents or has not been voted on and approved by the required percentage of owners, I think the person can tell them to go pound sand. The board can enforce what is in the documents, not make stuff up. They can enforce the rules on dogs, but cannot suddenly make up fees and rules not in the original documents. Unless DNA samples are required in the covenants, I do not see how they can require them now.

    • Billy says:

      Not really. There are things in the declarations that need a majority of owners’ approvals, but this isn’t one of them. Day-to-day rules can be voted in by a Board. It’s part of their job.

      The Declarations are like the constitution for a condo. It says how things will be run, how things are adjudicated, and how new rules are made (usually by Board vote). The Rules or By-laws are the things that the Board passes pursuant to the Declarations.

      As long as the Board is following the procedures in the Declarations (and the law), then the Board is allowed to make and enforce new rules as they wish.

  44. sherrietee says:

    Wouldn’t it have been cheaper to have an additional “pet fee” for pet owners to pay for pooper-scooper detail? Apartment complexes do it all the time. Why not condos?

    • Almighty Peanut says:

      they did have us do that. they made a newsletter awhile back stating they will increase HOA fees so the landscapers will clean it up.

  45. chiieddy says:
  46. Kuri says:

    Thank you consumerist for reminding me as to why my family and I will always, ALWAYS say no to HOAs.

    If you move into a place that has an HOA, you might as well be renting “your” property.

  47. Laughing says:

    I’d consider it both disgusting and intrusive for people to leave dog excrement around. If the HOA can afford the DNA testing costs then I support this measure.

  48. lostdisk says:

    My biggest question in this, is how are they going to “remove the dog/s”. I have a 90lb American Bulldog, and I don’t think they would remove her very easily.

    Also, I am now a HO, and no I don’t have a HOA (thank goodness). But I have lived in apartments, and shared houses with other people. One of the easiest ways I have found to take care of the poop issue, hire some kids to do it! I use to pay a neighbor kid, $10/week to cleanup our yard. Heck, if we had more kids around our place now, I would probably pay more than that for them to pick up the poo (I really hate to do it).

    Now, when I take my dog for her walk, that is a different story. I have been yelled at by a neighbor for not picking it up (I ran out of bags), but after I dumped my dog off at home, I went back. He was sorry he yelled at me, as I explained what happened. Didn’t have a problem with him after that.

    • Billy says:

      I think they can remove the dogs effectively by putting a lien on the property of some sort.

      It might not actually get the dogs removed, but it puts pressure on an owner to do it.

  49. sjackson12 says:

    My HOA is great, sorry to everyone that has a bad one

  50. Kate says:

    Wouldn’t it be easier and cheaper just to hire a kid to go scoop in the afternoons?

    • lostdisk says:

      That’s what I do, and I don’t even live in an HOA! They have to have some kids around. Charge a pet fee and let them pick up the poo. It really is easy work for them.

    • lovemypets00 - You'll need to forgive me, my social filter has cracked. says:

      There’s an unemployed guy in my area that just started a dog pooper scooper business, for private homes and other areas that need to have poop scooped. I thought it was a good idea, and kudos to him for trying to start a business.

  51. Bill610 says:

    I just find this confusing. I live in a pretty dense, old neighborhood without a homeowners’ association, and feel perfectly safe walking in my yard barefoot. Stepping in something is exceedingly rare, even though there’s no homeowner’s association to protect us from the errant dog pile and plenty of people have dogs.

    Is there something about HOAs that creates the problem they’re trying to solve? Maybe they only think it’s dog**** when it’s really bull****….

  52. headhot says:

    Simple, give them a fake sample.

  53. excaza says:

    They’re inviting you to drop a bag of poop on their desk. Why would you say no!?

  54. Mxx says:

    This should also extend to humans.
    Submit DNA samples and when cleaning crew finds cigarette buts on the ground, do dna analysis and fine the offender.

  55. xl3ill says:

    I live in an urban residential area (read: densely populated). I park on the street. Today, as I was getting in my car, I stepped in poop that was lying in the grass directly next to my car. This happens weekly! This one was fresh, resulting in my tracking it into the car and rubbing it into the carpets before I even noticed. My car smelled like poop the entire ride to work. F**#! And I know I will be spending at least an hour today cleaning the car and my shoe.

    All this because some lazy a$s didn’t pick up after their dog. I am totally in support of this measure by the HOA; in fact I have thought that my city should have the same requirement.

    As for the people saying this is “invasive,” I really don’t see where you come from with that opinion. Invasive to whom? You? You are telling me you have a deep privacy interest in your dog’s DNA? Are you saying it’s invasive to your dog? Are you F’ing kidding me? Do you really think taking the DNA sample is going to cause Fido some sort of mental distress? Really? Fido doesn’t even know what DNA is.

    On top of all that, as people have pointed out, a condo association is a democracy. If the residents are against it they can have it overturned. The argument that the COA is “invading privacy” because it wants your dog’s DNA is just ridiculous. Stop, think, and shut up.

  56. Invader Zim says:

    Give them DNA from a friends dog and then let yours poo everywhere. lol let them figure it out.

    • markvii says:

      That’s probably why the requirement is to “use the kit to take the DNA sample in the clubhouse in the presence of the On-Site Manager”

  57. reighvin says:

    Most HOA have monthly meetings where they vote on changes to the rules. My guess is that they were one of those homeowners that never attend the monthly meeting, and so now are being caught unaware and are throwing a fit. If you aren’t active in your HOA, then can’t bitch about it after the fact.

  58. Awesome McAwesomeness says:

    I live in an apartment complex and I wish they would do this. I see people walk by outside the window and they just let their dog crap without picking it up. Ugh. So nasty and rude. It’s a nice place, so their isn’t as much of a problem as at our last place, but it still happens. So rude.

  59. WildGibberish says:

    Since pets are considered property under the law I’m guessing that they can do this. If you register your car with your HOA they will usually ask for your tag number, vin number, and license number. Perhaps they see a DNA profile simply as a unique identifying marker of your property. It’s kind of creepy, but probably nothing you can fight in court. Probably isn’t long until we’ll be using DNA profiles like serial numbers on our pets anyway. Just think of your Condo Association as Progressive and Forward Thinking instead of creepy and invasive.

  60. Rachacha says:

    The OP says this is a new rule. Was this new rule presented to the members of the association and voted on? If not, it is likely illegal.

    • Plasmafox says:

      It would be except for the “we can change this contract for any reason in any way without notice an if you don’t like it suck our binding arbitration” clause in the contract they signed.

  61. ancientone567 says:

    Tell them that you don’t GIVE A SHIT! Literally and then sue them for trying to make you give a shit lol.

  62. Emily says:

    Call in the Canine ACLU.

  63. IDK says:

    So… If I get the DNA of some dog that’s out of town or out of state, and give it to them, it’ll never match up to my dog. Now you’ll never have to worry about someone coming up and saying your dog did something. If someone notices the DNA doesn’t match (who will actually take the time out to match DNA of a dog?), then you can just tell them that was your old dog that passed away. You just got this new dog recently.

  64. DCwiExplorer says:

    Know how to beat this? Borrow a dog for a day to bring in for DNA swabbing.

  65. Plasmafox says:

    I suspect it may have nothing to do with poop. Perhaps they intend to screen for dogs having, say, rottweiler or pit bull ancestry and force those owners to choose between their dog and their home.

  66. frankrizzo:You're locked up in here with me. says:

    Just plop a “Lawn Care Application Please Stay Off the Grass” sign in your yard. They will steer away from you.

    Me, I just spray my lawn with insecticide or fungicide.

  67. StevePierce says:

    No worries, just take in a different dog that sort of looks like yours. What are they going to do, ask the dog for its name.

    Make sure the condo association doesn’t have a hand scanner to look for a chip.

    Now you know why you should have been going to those condo association meetings.

  68. kgb says:

    Is it just me, or does it seem like everyone is trying to make rules/laws to micromanage everyone else?
    Dogs have been crapping for years and there’s obviously a way to handle it that doesn’t include DNA testing.

  69. irish_songbird says:

    I live in a condo complex and am on the HOA board. About 30% of the units have dogs, and fewer than half of those clean up after them. This means our gardens are full of dog shi*. There is space under the stairwells and some owners just let their dogs have a free-for-all as if it were designed for that. Many of them walk 12′ to the property edge (there’s a hillside there) and have their dogs poop just outside the boundary of the property. All of this means anybody walking down the sidewalk can smell dog poo, anyone using the stairs can smell dog poo, and there are flies everywhere. Everyone complains, but they still won’t clean up after their dogs.

    We used to have a patch of grass, but the dogs couldn’t resist it, and there were always brown spots all over it. We removed it and replaced it with jasmine, which the dogs proceeded to pee all over and kill. So we had a border of carpet roses (with thorns) put around the garden of jasmine, and that helped a lot.

    It is expensive to hire someone to go around and clean up the poo, and it’s not fair for the 85% who aren’t causing the problem to have to pay for it. So if someone has a better solution than this (other than putting carpet roses everywhere), I’d love to hear it.

  70. sj_user1 says:

    I guess you should have kept your dog on a leash and stopped it from shitting and pissing all over other people’s property.

  71. dollym100 says:

    I would check the rules and regs (or whatever they are referred to) to see if this is legal. It may have to be written into them with a vote from the members. Each state has different laws regarding the rights of homeowners.

    We live in a retirement HOA community with lots of walking trails and about half the people have dogs. I do not think it is a problem here but I have lived in places where many people are not as considerate Taking a dog’s DNA does seem a little extreme and I doubt there has been a legal precedent to do so.

    Maybe when the system is up and running, the dog owners who break the rule should be fined an amount to cover a rebate for those who do not,

  72. flip says:

    you spent all this money on a home to have some dipshit tell you what you can or cannot do.

  73. Mrs. w/1 child says:

    These types of rules are common in high rise condo Associations. The rule is written without stating an exact fee so the legal process required by state law to change the rules and regs (with the required printing, mailings, and time stamps) can be avoided as it is very expensive and time consuming.

    As with most other fees such as in unit maintenance charges for work orders and move or elevator fees the Board can vote to raise or lower them without having to revise the rules.

    As the saying goes 20% of the people are responsible for 80% of the problems. In a shared community, one persons refusal to pick up dog waste increases costs for everyone. The lazy person should have to pay for all the additional costs of staff wages to clean up their dogs poop and carpet cleaning, elevator cleaning, enzyme deodorization, etc. Pets require work, if you don’t want to do the clean up hire a walking service.

  74. Jets says:

    I live in a very small condo complex, and my neighbor two doors down has two HUGE dogs that scare the heck out of everyone. They are aggressive and unfriendly, and their manure output is about what a small elephant exudes. Of course, neither she nor her roommate pick up after them, and it’s in our condo by-laws and in the city laws that dog owners have to pick up after their pets. Everyone is scared of both the owners and the dogs. They don’t always observe the leash law, either, and when I hear a “WOOF! WOOF!”, I know those dogs are out without a leash. So far I’ve been able to get to safety before they got to me, but I know someone’s days are numbered around here, whether it be me or another neighbor or their pet. :(

  75. nopirates says:

    HOAs suck, but people who do not clean up after their idiot dogs SUCK MORE