Baby kangaroo subject of HOA controversy

March 12, 2012 by  

A Conroe couple, Nick and Jeni Dreis, recently fought their neighborhood’s Home Owner’s Association for the right to keep a 6-month old kangaroonamed Mike. The joey is a beloved companion for their daughter, Kayla, who has Down’s Syndrome.

“I like to snuggle with him,” Kayla, 16, said of Mike. “He’s silly. And he loves me.”

The couple plans to build a wildlife preserve, organic farm and education center on a 124-acre piece of Conroe land they’re currently leasing while they save for a down payment on the property. The center would potentially offer a variety of classes and training programs geared toward people with special needs, and they had planned for Mike to live at the wildlife preserve when he was a little older.

The HOA said that Mike, as a non-domestic pet, violated deed restrictions, and he would have to go, but after reports by local TV stations and newspapers began garnering support for the little joey, the association changed its tune.

“The letter should never have been sent,” said Jeff Crilley, a representative of the HOA. “They (HOA officials) were unaware that the kangaroo was being used for therapy purposes. We trust that the family is going to be working in good faith to find a more suitable home for the animal.”

As they raise money for the center, the couple often takes Mike to local events, accepting $10 donations for a picture with the little celebrity. One of the best ways to support Mike and the Dreis would be to help raise awareness for the proposed preserve and education center, for which printing services such as flyer printing and poster printing would be a great asset.