Frequently, municipalities struggle with residents over pet ownership laws, particularly those that restrict the number of dogs and cats a household can have. More often than not, these local pet limit laws affect pet owners living in residential areas within the country. The law is more lenient with people living in rural or agricultural areas. Also, the law is more lenient with cats than it is with dogs. For example, in the City of Los Angeles, you're allowed to own 5 cats but you're not allowed to own more than 3 dogs.

Most U.S. cities require that dogs be licensed while cats can walk free. In the District of Columbia, for example, dog owners are required to license their canines but cat owners are not. In Washington, D.C., you can own 4 cats or dogs or a combination of both animals not exceeding a total of 4 without a permit. You may obtain an Animal Hobby Permit to own 7 or more pets in the District. In Houston, Texas, households are limited to four dogs or cats. In Seattle, WA, you can't own more than 3 dogs or cats unless your property is over 20,000 square feet. Las Vegas residents are allowed to own a maximum of 6 dogs or cats without obtaining a special permit.

Aside from local pet limit laws, there are Homeowners Association (HOA) laws regulating pet ownership on their property. If your city allows 4 dogs per household, for example, your HOA has the authority to bring that number down to 2 or 1 on their property. If you live in a HOA community within the U.S., you must comply with their pet policy. Generally, HOAs within the U.S. have the right to determine how many dogs or cats are allowed in their community.

If you're not an HOA resident, check with your city or local animal control to find out how many pets are permitted per residence where you live.

## Pet Ownership Statistics in the United States

As per the APPA Pet Owners Survey of 2023 and 2024, 86.9 million households own a pet in the U.S. 51% of U.S. pet owners consider their pets family members. The most popular pet in the United States is the domestic dog. According to Forbes' 2024 pet ownership statistics, 65.1 million U.S. households own a dog while 46.5 million households own a cat.

During the pandemic, 78% of Americans acquired pets, according to Forbes Advisor. Homeowners in the country are more likely to own pets (58% of homeowners have a dog and 36% have a cat) than renters (39% of renters have a dog and 29% have a cat). While 38% of U.S. dog owners got their pets from an animal shelter or rescue, 42% got them from a store. 43% of U.S. cat owners got their pets from a store, while 40% got their pets from an animal shelter or rescue. The top 5 most popular dog breeds in the U.S. include the French bulldog, Labrador retriever, Golden retriever, German shepherd, and Poodle while the top 5 most popular cats include the Ragdoll, Main Coon, Devon Rex, Exotic shorthair, and Persian.

In some U.S. cities, the following breeds of dogs are either banned or restricted: Alaskan Malamute, Akita, Belgian Malinois, Cane Corso, Chow Chow, Bullmastiff, Pit Bull, Dogo Argentino, Doberman Pinscher, German Shepherd, Presa Canario, Siberian Husky, and Rottweiler. These breeds are also most often banned by home insurance companies.

## Number of Pets Allowed Per Household in Each U.S State

Click on the link to your state to find out how many dogs and cats you're allowed to have.

- How many pets can you have in Alabama?
- How many pets can you have in Alaska?
- How many pets can you have in Arizona?
- How many pets can you have in Arkansas?
- How many pets can you have in California?
- How many pets can you have in Colorado?
- How many pets can you have in Connecticut?
- How many pets can you have in Delaware?
- How many pets can you have in Florida?
- How many pets can you have in Georgia?
- How many pets can you have in Hawaii?
- How many pets can you have in Idaho?
- How many pets can you have in Illinois?
- How many pets can you have in Indiana?
- How many pets can you have in Iowa?
- How many pets can you have in Kansas?
- How many pets can you have in Kentucky?
- How many pets can you have in Louisiana?
- How many pets can you have in Maine?
- How many pets can you have in Maryland?
- How many pets can you have in Massachusetts?
- How many pets can you have in Michigan?
- How many pets can you have in Minnesota?
- How many pets can you have in Mississippi?
- How many pets can you have in Missouri?
- How many pets can you have in Montana?
- How many pets can you have in Nebraska?
- How many pets can you have in Nevada?
- How many pets can you have in New Hampshire?
- How many pets can you have in New Jersey?
- How many pets can you have in New Mexico?
- How many pets can you have in New York?
- How many pets can you have in North Carolina?
- How many pets can you have in North Dakota?
- How many pets can you have in Ohio?
- How many pets can you have in Oklahoma?
- How many pets can you have in Oregon?
- How many pets can you have in Pennsylvania?
- How many pets can you have in Rhode Island?
- How many pets can you have in South Carolina?
- How many pets can you have in South Dakota?
- How many pets can you have in Tennessee?
- How many pets can you have in Texas?
- How many pets can you have in Utah?
- How many pets can you have in Vermont?
- How many pets can you have in Virginia?
- How many pets can you have in Washington State?
- How many pets can you have in West Virginia?
- How many pets can you have in Wisconsin?
- How many pets can you have in Wyoming?

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Pets