Strata pets create stronger friendships

Strata pets create stronger friendships

Sydney resident Anna Shepherd knows all too well the pain of giving up a pet when moving into an apartment. Twenty years ago she was forced to give up her precious pooch Waldo because her strata building in Double Bay was not pet friendly.

“I had my dog Waldo for 12 years but I wasn’t allowed to keep him in the new apartment building. I had to give him away. It was absolutely heartbreaking,” Ms Shepherd said.

Now living in Rushcutters Bay, the CEO of Regal Home Health and her new dog Mambo are enjoying the benefits of life in a pet-friendly apartment building.

“Community is a really big part of who I am and living in this building has really expanded my world,” Ms Shepherd said.

“I never used to go to the park and I never used to walk every day. I now have a lot of friends in the building who also have dogs. Mambo’s girlfriend Cherry also lives downstairs and they visit each other all the time.

“I meet a lot more people because of Mambo. It has broken down barriers and created a sense of community.”

Pet ownership can present some challenges, such as the odd noise complaint over a barking dog, but Ms Shepherd says they are often easily resolved.

“Most people are respectful and they resolve any issues over time. There are also rules about walking dogs on a lead and ensuring they cannot roam the building on their own,” Ms Shepherd said.

“The benefits absolutely outweigh the challenges. The community of pet owners support each other. It’s a real village and I love living here.”

Apartment residents can learn how to get the most out of pet-friendly living in a free workshop hosted by the City of Sydney on Tuesday 23 May.

The Strata Paws workshop will help apartment owners and renters to understand their rights, provide tips on improving your pet’s life and introduce strategies to reduce potential pet conflicts in strata buildings.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the workshop is part of the City’s Strata Skills 101 series, led by industry experts.

“For many people, a companion animal brings much needed love and happiness into their lives,” the Lord Mayor said.

“With more and more people living in apartments, we want to make sure that people who own, rent or manage strata understand their rights and responsibilities. And as our population grows, the number of apartment dwellers in our area is set to increase to more than 80 per cent by 2030.

“We’re committed to helping strata residents develop the skills and strategies to get the most out of apartment living.”

Strata Paws: Living with pets in apartments

When: Tuesday 23 May, 6pm–8pm
Where: City of Sydney, Level 3, 307 Pitt Street, Sydney
Who: Presented by Dr Joanne Righetti, Animal Behavioural Consultant, Pet Problems Solved, along with facilitator Robin Miles, Director at Social Equity Works
What: The Strata Paws workshop is perfect if you’re moving with your pet into an apartment, have a new pet or are thinking about getting one. The workshop will provide tips on improving your pet’s life and help reduce potential ‘pet conflicts’ in buildings. Strata Paws is suitable for both owners and renters.
Cost:  Free. Places are limited and bookings are essential. Visit

For media inquiries or images, contact City of Sydney Senior Media Advisor Angela Salt.
Phone 0455 958 503 or

For interviews with Lord Mayor Clover Moore, contact Matt Levinson.
Phone 0499 319 385 or email