WEST ORANGE, N.J. (CBSNew York) — One condo association in New Jersey is looking into asking pet owners to give samples of their dog’s DNA to ensure owners pick up after their pets — causing some residents to question their rights.
Eagle Ridge, a condominium complex in West Orange, has released a proposal that would mandate dog owners to provide a DNA sample from their pet, CBS2’s Jessica Schneider reported.
If pet owners do not submit a DNA sample by the proposed deadline, they would then face a $100 fine, with a subsequent $250 fine for every week that passes after.
“It took me so long for me to become a homeowner, I’d think I’d have some kinds of freedoms around here,” Barbara Mintz, a resident and dog owner, said. “It just seemed to me a little extreme.”
Residents say they’re not sure why the board wants to do DNA testing on their dogs, but they fear it could lead to losing their pets.
“The DNA testing is non-invasive and is not being used for any purpose other than to identify dog owners who are not cleaning up after their dogs,” board member Howard Matalon told CBS2 in a statement.
“People are not picking up after their dogs and everybody has to suffer for it,” Mintz said.
But lawyers say condo associations are free to mandate DNA testing — and it’s happening all over the country.
“Condo boards have a lot of authority to enact rules for the benefit of the people,” attorney Frank Marciano said.
Mintz is now circulating a petition against the proposal.
The board will hold a public comment session this Thursday.
A final decision will be made in March.