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April 24, 2014

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When Holly Madison built a big house for her dogs, the HOA started yapping

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Denise Truscello

Ah, domesticity: Holly Madison, Pasquale Rotella and one of Madison’s pooches.

Holly Madison Farewell Party at Buca di Beppo

Holly Madison, center, celebrates her final show in Launch slideshow »
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Always causing a stir, Holly makes like a mommy in her kitchen.

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Holly Madison arrives at the "Rock of Ages" grand opening after-party at the Venetian on Saturday, Jan. 5, 2013.

In November, during an interview at her house in a gated community in Southern Highlands, Holly Madison noted that she and her beau, Pasquale Rotella, were in escrow to buy a home in the distinguished, old Vegas neighborhood Rancho Circle.

“It’s the cutest neighborhood, and I love how close it is to downtown. It’s quirky and old,” she said as she ate a bowl of cereal on her kitchen counter. The interview was for a Las Vegas Weekly cover story about Madison published Nov. 29. “We’re selling this house. We thought of renting it, but we’re finished here.”

I asked why she would want to move out of her current home, as it is easily large enough for the baby Madison and Rotella are expecting in a couple of months, along with Madison's three dogs (Louis, Napoleon and Josephine) and two pet ferrets (Sid and Nancy).

“The HOA (homeowners association) here is so bad, I don’t even want to deal with them,” she said, laughing. “They’ve come after me about the dumbest things. Sometimes it's things that don’t even apply to the rules.”

She then pointed to the back yard, at a distinctive structure next to the pool.

“I built this ridiculous, human-sized doghouse behind my house, and when I went over it with my contractor, he consulted the HOA on all their restrictions and whatnot,” she said, referring to a pink house that would be big enough for many dogs or even a family of Hobbits. “He told me it has to match the architecture of the house, so I did that with the roof because people would see the roof. It’s possible you could see the roof from the street, but you can’t see any of it from the street, actually.

“My thought is, if you can’t see anything in my back yard from the street, then who is peeking in my back yard?”

She’s right about that. By rule and common logic, for something to be considered an eyesore, it has to be seen. The color of the house has been a particularly prickly issue.

“They keep fining me for having it painted pink. But the thing about it is I asked the contractor because when I had that thing built, I kind of knew I wasn’t going to stay in this house, and I wanted something I could put on a pallet and take to the next place with me,” she said. “Absolutely, it’s a temporary structure, so it’s not even under their jurisdiction. That would be like harping on someone over their kids’ jungle gym.”

I suggested that the fine could be considered a simply monthly rental payment for the house.

“It’s a hundred dollars a month, or something like that,” she said. “I haven’t been paying it. I just keep sending them nasty letters.”

At the time, the house had been built on a set of pallets. I texted Madison today to see if she still planned to haul the house to her new residence.

Her response: “Yes, I’m going to bring it.”

Call it Casa de Pooches, the city’s most famous home for a trio of lucky dogs.

Follow John Katsilometes on Twitter at Twitter.com/JohnnyKats. Also, follow “Kats With the Dish” at Twitter.com/KatsWiththeDish.

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