Update 01 March 2020- AVS announced today that the criteria for dogs to be under Project ADORE has been changed. The previous weight restriction has been removed and the maximum height raised to 55cm, in a two-year pilot. This change means that more Singapore Specials can find loving homes. Project ADORE, a scheme which allows the keeping of local breed dogs (more affectionately known as Singapore Specials) in HDB flats, was first proposed by the SPCA and ASD in 2011 and a pilot was launched in 2012, administered by both welfare groups, MND, AVA and HDB. The scheme has enabled more than 1,000 street dogs to find good homes. Please adopt from SPCA and ASD instead of buying pet dogs.
Almost everyone loves dogs. They serve as guides and emotional pet support for some disabled persons. Some people considered them as children. They can be our protector and our stress reliever. That is why they are referred to as “man’s best friend.”
However, if you’re living in Housing and Development Board (HDB) in Singapore, you can’t keep whatever breed of dogs you want to take care. If you are thinking about buying a property from HDB while having a dog, this blog will discuss and help you be aware of what is acceptable or not.
What are HDB flats? Why does it matter what breed of dogs I can own in HDB?
Housing and Development Board (HDB), also known as HDB flats to Singaporeans, is public housing in Singapore wherein owners can live for 99 years. Foreigners cannot buy a unit from HDB.
About 80% of Singaporeans live in HDB, and about 90% of them own it. There are six (6) types of HDB flats. Each varies to the number of floor area (in square meters), number of room, and bathroom. These types are:
- 2-room Flexi flat About 36 square meters (Type 1) and 45 square meters (Type 2)
- 3-room flat About 60 to 65 square meters
- 4-room flat About 90 square meters
- 5-room flat About 110 square meters
- 3Gen flat About 115 square meters
- Executive flat About 130 square meters
Are Dogs Allowed in HDB Flat?
Yes, dogs are allowed in HDB and not all dog breeds are allowed in HDB flats.
In general, Singapore banned some breeds of dogs in their country to prevent harm to dog owners or the public-at-large from dangerous dogs. These breeds of dogs are known to be aggressive if not trained properly. You can scroll down below for the list of approved dog breeds as well as the list of banned dogs from HDB dwellings.
HDB apartments allow only one dog of a toy breed or its cross (that stands at 40cm at the shoulders and weighs 10kg or less).
Living in an HDB flat does not mean that pet ownership is restricted, as long as you follow the HDB rules for pet ownership.
What Breeds of Dogs are Allowed in HDB Flat?
As mentioned before, as long as your dog’s breed is a toy breed or its cross, then you’re fine.
These are the complete list of accepted breeds of dogs for HDB:
- Australian Silky Terrier
- Australian Terrier
- Bichon Frise
- Bichon Frise
- Bohemian Terrier
- Border Terrier
- Boston Terrier
- Brussels Griffon
- Cairn Terrier
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
- Chinese Crested Dog
- Chinese Imperial Chin
- Chinese Temple Dog
- Coton de Tulear
- Czech Terrier
- DandieDinmont Terrier
- English Toy Spaniel
- German Hunting Terrier
- Griffon Belge
- Griffon Brabancon
- Hairless Dog
- Italian Greyhound
- Jack Russel Terrier
- Japanese Spaniel (Chin)
- Japanese Spitz
- Lakeland Terrier
- Lhasa Apso
- Little Lion Dog
- Manchester Terrier
- Miniature Pinscher
- Miniature Schnauzer
- Norfolk Terrier
- Norwegian Lundehund
- Norwich Terrier
- Poodle (Toy / Miniature)
- Scottish Terrier
- Sealyham Terrier
- Shetland Sheepdog
- Shih Tzu
- Silky Terrier
- Small Continental Spaniel
- Small English Terrier
- Small Spitz
- Smooth Fox Terrier
- Tibetan Spaniel
- Toy Fox Terrier
- Toy Terrier
- Welsh Terrier
- West Highland Terrier
- Wire-Haired Fox Terrier
- Yorkshire Terrier
Special exemption for local mixed breed dogs in HDB housing
There is one exemption to this rule, and that is if you are going to adopt a local mixed breed dog, Singapore special, under project ADORE (ADOption and REhoming of dogs). This project is being supported by different government animal agencies and has been a permanent scheme since May 2014.
Under this project, you must meet these criteria and do the following so you can keep the adopted dog in your HDB flat:
- The dog is at least six months old.
- The dog is sterilized.
- As of 01 March 2020, all local mixed breeds for HDB, under project Adore has NO WEIGHT LIMIT, and height limit to shoulder has been increased to 55cm.
- The dog must undergo basic obedience training by trainers accredited by the AVA.
- You must sign a declaration, agreeing to observe the Code of Responsible Behavior (CORB).
- You understand that only one registered dog is allowed per HDB flat.
- Make sure that your immediate neighbors do not mind you owning a dog.
- You must ensure that your pet is vaccinated, sterilized, and microchipped.
- You should apply for an AVA dog license.
- Make sure your dog is HDB-approved.
What Breeds of Dogs are NOT Allowed in HDB Flat?
Singapore banned some breeds of dogs in their country to prevent harm to dog owners or the public-at-large from dangerous dogs. Some breed of dogs banned from HDB flats are
- American Bulldog
- Neapolitan Mastiff
- Tosa Inu, Boerboel
- Dogo Argentino
- Fila Brasileiro
- Presa Canario.
These breeds of dogs are known to be aggressive if not trained properly.
Guidelines on Bringing a Dog in HDB Flat
Now that we have laid you the list of HDB-approved breed of dogs, we’ll now show you what you need to keep in mind before moving in with your dog.
Make Sure Your Dog’s Breed Is On The List Of The Allowed Breed Of Dogs
If not, do not forcefully try to keep it in your flat. Also, remember not to keep more than one dog. A resident of the HDB flat who does not abide by this regulation can be fined up to a maximum of $4,000.
Your Dog Must Be Licensed By The NParks Animal & Veterinary Service (AVS)
This is for trace-ability in the event of an outbreak in disease, such as rabies.
You Must Be A Responsible Pet Owner
You do not want your dog barking continuously and causing a nuisance to your neighbor. The last thing you want to happen is your neighbor complaining to the HDB officials about you and your dog.
Be A Good Neighbor
This is a general rule, not only if you have a pet. Being one builds trust and a good relationship with your neighbor. You’ll never know, maybe you can ask them a favor in the future.
Take Note Of The Assistance Services That You Can Seek Help
There are some agencies where you can seek help if you have issues related to keeping dogs in HDB flats. These are:
- HDB – For enforcement against flat owners of the ‘one-approved-dog’ per flat rule.
- NEA – For enforcement against dog owners whose dogs defecate in public places and cause environmental damage.
- NPARKS AVS – Issuing of dog licenses and enforcement against dog owners whose dog chases or bites people.
We know how important pets in our lives. It gives us happiness and is a big help in our emotional feelings. However, there are also rules to obey. Abiding will not only keep us from hassle, but it will also benefit us in any way in the long run.