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Actor's Suicide Puts Spotlight on Building Pet Rules

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Actor Nick Santino's decision to have his healthy dog euthanized before killing himself is drawing a lot of attention to pet rules in buildings like One Lincoln Plaza, where Santino lived with his pitbull-mix Rocco. Many are attributing Santino's suicide to a feeling that he was being persecuted and victimized for owning a large breed dog in a building that had banned them, despite the fact that Rocco's place there was grandfathered in under the new policy. But new rules that barred Rocco from riding in the building's main elevators, required he not be left alone in the apartment for more than nine straight hours, and strictly prohibited barking allegedly drove Santino into a depression. On his 47th birthday last week, Santino euthanized his canine best friend and then killed himself in what is being described as a fit of remorse and regret.

With more buildings limiting dogs outright, or by breed or behavior, some owners are going to extreme lengths to make sure their pooches qualify. Real estate broker and reality show star Michelle Kleier told the Post that she's heard of dog owners starving their pets to get them under building-set weight limits, and drugging dogs so they won't respond during barking tests. For pet owners less willing to go to such extremes, there are animal shelters that have seen an influx of dogs given up by owners who had to make a choice between a pet and an apartment.
· Co-op dog daze [NYP]
· Soap actor commits suicide after pup's 'forced' euthanasia [NYP]