Is it possible for someone to own more than one emotional support animal? Yes, it is very possible as long as you have the necessary documentation. It is also possible to get different species of emotional support animals for example, having a cat and a dog at the same time.
The Federal Law in the United States, ADA (Americans Disability Act), understands that some people need more than one ESA to help them manage their mental disability.
For this, you must get approved by a mental health practitioner or certified physician for an emotional support animal. You can either do this with an in-clinic visit or apply via an online clinic like My ESA Doctor.
Why Would Someone Need More Than One Emotional Support Animal?
Different animals have different abilities based on their species and their inherent nature. Some animals, like dogs, are friendly by nature. On the other hand, cats are born smart and lazy.
Because of the differences in their natural behavior, they may serve as emotional support animals differently. For instance, both dogs and cats often companionship to patients dealing with depression and anxiety. However, their method of providing this service differs. Dogs, with their friendly, cuddly and energetic nature, make the perfect companion for a patient who wants that type of liveliness around them. On the other hand, a patient who wants a much calmer companion would choose a cat as an ESA.
Different animals may also fulfil different emotional requirements of a patient, in which case, they can decide to have more than one ESA. Furthermore, staying with one animal can get boring. You might want different kinds of energy in the house.
Who Can Get More Than One Emotional Support Animal?
Anyone with the right supporting documents can get more than one ESA. To get more than one emotional support animal, you have to get approval from a mental health doctor or certified physician.
In case you have multiple disabilities or your therapist/ doctor believes that 2 or more ESAs can help improve your condition, they might approve your application for multiple ESAs.
Here are some of the mental disabilities that the doctor can approve you for an ESA for:
- Panic Attacks
- Panic Attacks
- Personality Disorders
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder ADHD
- Bipolar Disorder
- Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Anorexia or Bulimia
- Different types of Phobia ( e.g Agoraphobia)
What Is the Limit of Emotional Support Animals?
Right now there is no specific limit for the number of emotional support you can have. This means that as long as you have an approval for all the animals, you can have as many emotional support animals as you need. It is possible to have five dogs or three cats if the licensed physician finds you eligible to own them.
What Does the Fair Housing Act Say About Multiple Emotional Support Animals?
The Fair Housing Act is an act that regulates the housing system by making sure any type of discrimination is eliminated in the United States. Here, discrimination is in terms of sex, race, religion or disability.
According to the act, a housing provider (landlord) must provide reasonable accommodation to a mentally disabled person, just as they would provide it to any healthy individual. At the same time, the landlord must allow an emotional support animal to accompany the patient, without any hindrances.
Even if a landlord has a no pets policy, they must allow your ESA to find accommodation with you. In any case, the landlord may ask you to present them with your emotional support animal letter as proof. However, a landlord cannot demand any other documentation, such as your medical records, as proof.
However, there are provisions protecting landlords against these laws, but those are limited to certain situations. You should make sure your animals have restraint. Because, the landlord is also allowed to evict them from the property if they disrupt the livelihood of other tenants. For example, if your dogs chase and bite other people on the property or if they make a lot of noise.
Also Read : Fair Housing Act Emotional Support Animal: Section 504
What Type of Animals Can Your Landlord Allow You to Keep?
Firstly, what type of animal do you want to keep and where? Your doctor can ask you that question. You must also be reasonable with your request. If you decide to get a horse as your ESA, your landlord is under no obligation to provide you a place yto stay. As long as your ESA is of a reasonable size and can survive in the type of housing you can provide, there shouldn’t be any trouble. These are some of the animals that you can keep in your apartment:
- Birds ( e.g parrots)
How to Get an Emotional Support Letter For More Than One Animal?
Well, the process is not quite different from getting an ESA letter for one animal. If you do not know how to get an emotional support letter at all here is the process:
- Firstly, you have to locate a trusted clinic. You can visit the clinic physically or just use a trusted online clinic like My ESA Doctor.
- Talk to a certified physician or doctor. The physician will determine if your mental disability needs an emotional support animal or not. You also have to provide proof that you suffer from that condition, probably a prescription.
- If the doctor approves your application, you will receive an ESA letter.
That is the process of getting an ESA letter. In the case of multiple emotional support animals, you don’t necessarily have to get separate letters for each animal. You can get a single ESA letter that specifies all the animals that you’re medically approved to own.
This does not mean you cannot apply for each animal individually. In case of applying at different times, you will require separate letters for each animal. Just remember, in both cases, the letters are equally legitimate.
There is no technical limit to the number of emotional support animals that you can own. As long as you have approval to keep all of them, you can live with your animals at any facility, even if pets are not allowed.
As long as you comply with the basic rules and regulations of applying for an ESA and taking care of them, you shouldn’t face any complications.
Also read : How to Get an Emotional Support Animal (ESA) Letter For Housing
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