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Pets Ban: Tenant ‘MARRIES’ cat to ensure it moves to rental property

Bizarre but true - a tenant has undergone a pseudo-marriage ceremony with her cat in a bid to get around any future rental pet ban.

Deborah Hodge, 49 and from Kent, claims she has been obliged to rehome three animals as a result of landlords not allowing allow pets in their properties. 

So - apparently wearing a tuxedo - she has held a witnesses civil ceremony with her cat India. The event was presided over by a legally ordained friend.


Hodge says: "I set out my intention that I would never be separated from the animal I adore. I can't be without India. She is truly a sensation, she is so friendly and amazing. She is fundamentally the most important thing in my life after my children.

"By marrying India, I need any future landlords to know that we come as a package and we cannot be separated under any circumstances as she is as important to me as the children. 

“I refuse to be parted with her. I'd rather live on the streets than be without her."

Momentum has been building in the past year for pets to be allowed in more rental properties, possibly with an insurance payment to reassure landlords fearful of damage.

It is thought that the Renters Reform Bill and White Paper scheduled for later this year may require landlords to be more flexible about taking pets.

Hodge continues: “I'm terrified of losing India. I can barely leave my house with anxiety over what the future holds and I'm just desperate not to lose my cat. 

“By marrying India, I need any future landlords to know that we come as a package and we cannot be separated under any circumstances as she is as important to me as the children.

"Although some might think it a stupid idea, I wanted to be able to show physically, by holding the ceremony in front of my friends even though they thought I was bonkers that I am very serious. I had a group of friends there for the ceremony - they all think I've gone batsh*t crazy but we all had a lovely day.

"I recited vows under the universe that no man will ever tear myself and India apart. I set out my intention that I would never be separated from the animal I adore.”

Want to comment on this story? If so...if any post is considered to victimise, harass, degrade or intimidate an individual or group of individuals on any basis, then the post may be deleted and the individual immediately banned from posting in future.

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    Oh! Please. And how exactly did the cat respond to "And do you, India, take this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife?"
    "Me? Ow!"
    Good. You may now lick the bride or your arse, either is fine.
    I trust that Deborah has now given up any single-person council tax discount.



    Darryl Hollywood

    "you may now lick the bride" Love it

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    Does Deborah realise that just because you're married it doesn't automatically mean you're on the tenancy and allowed to live in the property?
    I wonder where they went on honeymoon?


    Definitely, somewhere on a pea-green cat-amaran (best not to continue the verse any further!!)

  • Fery  Lavassani

    Failure to consummate will render this marriage null and void. Unless Debbie or India can prove that a sexual intercourse has in fact taken place. The article mentioned three cats. Sounds orgy to me.

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    I prefer not to take tenants with mental health conditions I am not equipped to deal with - this lady would fall into this category!

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    Renter’s Reform Bill, take note don’t forget to add Married Cats, as well as all the other stupid ideas you have.

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    When I take on a married couple both are checked out, and both have to pass the checks, the cat wouldn't be working so would fail those checks, sorry not suitable, no tenancy

  • PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    Would have been a lot cheaper for the Tenant to have found - paid for a Guarantor or suitable policy.

  • Suzy OShea

    Surely such a ceremony can't be legal!

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    Married or not, after the mess that my properties (house and garden) have been left in after allowing pets ...... never ever again..... sorry pet lovers

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    • E T
    • 26 April 2022 10:32 AM

    I just wonder why she is moving so often that she has had to rehome 3 cats already and is already concerned about moving again? In 12 years of being a landlord of multiple properties, I haven't had to evict a tenant yet (although one moved out just before they were to be issued a section 8 ASB to be fair) If they keep the house nice, stick to the rules, pay the rent and aren't difficult to deal with (re inspections, safety certs etc) why would you?

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    You have to laugh at some peoples stupidity. I would say most of the landlords that could be persuaded to allow a cat, would reject this woman due to her lack of sanity. If she’s marrying a cat, I’d not be feeling confident that she’d competent enough to make sure her rent is paid every month. The irony is, she will be convinced that her scheme is genius in some way.

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    49 years old, still renting, and reduced to marrying her pets as a form of grandstanding.

    But it's landlords that are the problem.


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