COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho - An official with the Intermountain Fair Housing Council says many Idaho landlords aren't abiding by the Fair Housing Act when it comes to renters with doctor-prescribed companion animals.

Richard Mabbutt says he receives calls daily about landlords violating the rights of renters with service animals.

The federal Fair Housing Act makes it illegal for the owner of a complex of four or more units, including apartments, hotels and motels, to refuse someone a room because of animals prescribed to help cope with a mental or physical condition.

Mabbutt says owners are concerned animals will bring down the property value.

He says testing by the Intermountain Fair Housing Council has found 80 percent noncompliance by landlords in Idaho concerning companion or service animals.

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