How Many Dogs or Cats Can You Own in Colorado?

The state of Colorado is home to some of the most dog-friendly cities in the United States. The city of Brighton is considered to be the most pet-friendly in Colorado. However, as far as domestic animals go, is there a limit to the number of dogs or cats a resident can legally have in their house in the Centennial State? Fortunately for pet lovers in Colorado, there isn't a statewide law that dictates the number of dogs or cats a resident can keep in their home.

Three dogs sitting
Photo credit: @the_cornish_shepherds

Rather, the number of dogs or cats you can legally own depends on where in Colorado you live. In other words, each Colorado county and city has local zoning laws to follow, including how many pets are allowed per household and restricted breeds. In addition, the maximum amount of pets allowed in a residence could also be dictated by a landlord or a neighborhood's specific homeowners' association renting out a property. With that in mind, let's look at pet ownership laws in some cities and counties in Colorado.

Douglas County, CO

Most Colorado counties, including Douglas, allow up to four adult dogs or cats per household. According to the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, Douglas County residents are allowed to keep 4 adult dogs (dogs that are 4 months of age or older) at one residence. Castle Rock, the most populous municipality of Douglas County, Colorado, allows a maximum of five cats per household.

Colorado Springs

If you live in the City of Colorado Springs, you can have up to four dogs and four cats over the age of four months in your house. However, if the property on which you live exceeds the pet ownership limitation, it may be considered a kennel, which is not allowed within residential areas.

Arapahoe County, CO

The number of dogs or cats you can own in Arapahoe County depends on your residence’s zone district. According to the county's government website, most residential zone districts in Arapahoe allow no more than three domestic pets over the age of six months. But if you live in an agriculturally zoned area, you are allowed to have four domestic pets over the age of six months.

Jefferson County, CO

Jefferson County allows its residents to keep a maximum number of three dogs or cats on a property. Residents are also permitted to keep litters of puppies and kittens until weaned. However, there is no limit to the number of domestic pets you can own in Jefferson County if you live on a property that meets the minimum lot size. For more information, refer to the Domestic Animals Permitted by Zoning table.

Adams County, CO

The maximum number of domestic pets allowed per residence in Adams County, CO depends on the property size and zone district. If you live in an agricultural area, you can own up to 8 dogs and 8 cats, depending on the property size. You can own up to four dogs and five cats if you live in a residential estate. If you live in a Duplex or Mobile Home, you can own up to four dogs and four cats in Adams County, Colorado. Keeping more than ten cats or dogs on a property in Adams County requires you to follow the Private Kennel and Cattery regulations.

Weld County, CO

If you live in Zone A (agriculture) in Weld County, you may keep up to four dogs or cats on a property between one and ten acres in size. and a maximum of eight dogs or cats on a property of 10 acres or more. Keeping more than eight domestic animals on a property requires a special use permit for kenneling practices, according to the Weld County Sheriff's Office.

Colorado cities that place no limit on dogs and cats

Fortunately for people living in the city of Fort Collins, there is no limit to the number of dogs or cats they can own, so long as the animals are properly cared for. The City rules also state that dogs and cats must be licensed, vaccinated, and leashed if they are not confined to a yard. The city of Loveland also has the same code regarding domestic pet ownership in place. If you live in the City of Loveland, you can keep as many dogs or cats in your home as you can take care of. The code also notes that your pets must not create “a nuisance to the occupants of neighboring properties.”

Restricted or Banned Dog Breeds in Colorado

An American Bulldog and a Dogo Argentino

Several municipalities in Colorado ban ownership of American pit bull terriers. These cities include:
  • Aurora
  • Castle Rock
  • Commerce City
  • Fort Lupton
  • Lone Tree
  • Louisville
  • Simla
Other restricted breeds in the municipality of Aurora include:
  • American Bulldog
  • Dogo Argentino
  • Presa Mallorquin
  • Tosa Inu
  • Cane Corso
  • Fila Brasileiro

In 2020, Denver residents voted to repeal the law than banned pit bills within the city limits. Pit bull lovers in Denver are now able to keep the breed but must obtain a provisional Breed-Restricted Permit from Denver Animal Protection.

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