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EXPALINED: Do tenants in Norway have the right to keep a pet? 

Frazer Norwell
Frazer Norwell - [email protected]
EXPALINED: Do tenants in Norway have the right to keep a pet? 
Here is what you need to know about having a pet as a tenant in Norway. Pictured is a Jack Russel. Photo by Natalie Kinnear on Unsplash

Many landlords in Norway will specify whether pets are allowed in their property listings. Despite that, tenants in Norway may have the right to keep a pet regardless. 

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Norway has become a nation of animal lovers. Since 2006, the number of cats and dogs in Norway has soared from 270,000 to 890,000 by the end of 2022, according to figures from DyreID, the service for identifying microchipped animals in Norway.

However, many tenants will know the hassle of finding a suitable place to live where they can bring their furry friend with them. This also puts many of getting a pet in the first place until they own somewhere. 

So, how easy is it to find a place willing to take an animal? Luckily, many property listing sites, FINN and Hybel being among the most popular, will allow users to filter properties where the landlord is willing to accept a pet. As most of these sites are only offered in Norwegian, you will need to keep an out for the filter that says “dyrehold tillatt”. 


Many contracts will also specify whether or not animals are allowed to live with the tenant. Despite this, some tenants in Norway will have the right to have a pet in the house anyway, regardless of what is in the contract. 

“Even if the landlord has included in the contract that keeping animals is not permitted, the tenant can keep animals if there are good reasons for it and the keeping of animals does not inconvenience the landlord or other residents of the property,” the Rent Disputes Committee advises on its website

A landlord can still block a tenant from having a pet if the property’s owner wishes to use the home after the rental period ends and is allergic to pets. Other reasons would be if the dog was to bark at night, cause a nuisance to neighbours or create an unpleasant smell.

If you plan on getting a puppy or kitten, it may be more challenging, as these are more likely to cause a smell or be a nuisance to neighbours than an older, better-trained animal. Additionally, pets can cause extra wear and tear on the property, which you will be liable for. 

On the other hand, smaller animals like hamsters will cause a smaller inconvenience meaning it is easier for the good reasons for you having a pet, such as the psychological benefit, to outweigh the disadvantages for the other concerned parties. 

Still, even if you want a pet and believe that you are covered by the rules that allow you to have an animal with good reason, and that doesn’t disadvantage the landlord, you should probably open a dialogue with your landlord about potentially changing the rules to allow a cat or dog. One issue is that the “good reason” justification for having a pet is open to interpretation. 


The situation could also become quite ugly should you decide to get the pet and hope the rules are in your favour. Should the landlord choose to challenge this by going to a complaints tribunal, it could become expensive or mean you’ll need to find somewhere else to live. 

This is because the landlord may already have good reasons for not allowing pets. If the property is an apartment complex or a housing association, there may be a blanket animal ban. This may cause the landlord to have to sell their home due to violating the association rules. 

Therefore, it’s always best to ask the landlord whether they’d be willing to change the contract or wait until moving into a new property that allows pets. Although, this can’t always be helped as something out of your control can happen, such as a relative or loved one dying and their pet needing a new home. 


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