85 million families in the U.S. have pets, according to research. This just goes to show that owning a pet is one of the best things ever!
But it’s not easy to have a pet (just as it is not easy to have a child). If you’re a fur mom or dad, you understand how pets can be so unruly (and destructive) at times. If they’re not given enough training and discipline, you could have a hard time taking your pet to a new community… even finding a new apartment.
Sadly, this is the reason why many pets end up in animal shelters.
It’s true – landlords can say “no” to pets.
But you shouldn’t feel discouraged. Finding pet-friendly housing is possible. In fact, many communities happily allow pets. But of course, you need to show that you are a responsible pet owner and ensure that your pet will not cause any issues to the landlord as well as to the neighborhood.
Here’s how you can make your pet a great rental resident.
A Healthy Pet is a Happy Pet
Medical and degenerative disorders can cause changes in an animal’s behavior. An ill dog, for example, is more likely to have problems socializing with other dogs or with people. They may also be less capable of adapting to a new environment, which results in restlessness and impulsive behavior when moving to a new home. If your pet is sick or suffering from a chronic condition, check with your vet first.
Focus on Their Nutrition
Make sure that your pet receives a balanced diet. It’s the best way to keep their health in tiptop shape. Pay great attention to the kind of food your pet is eating. Consult with your vet about the best vitamins you can give to your pet to strengthen their immunity.
Practice Proper Grooming and Cleaning
Grooming is not just about keeping your pet good-looking. It’s also about keeping him clean and healthy. Brushing your dog’s fur, for example, can help reduce dead hair and dirt, and bring out their skin’s natural oils. You should also give your pet a bath at least once every other week. Invest in a good-quality comb, brush, shampoo and conditioner, a toothbrush, an electric clipper, and a pet dryer to make grooming easier.
Update Their Vaccines and Health Checks Ups
Many housing communities have shared common areas like playgrounds, which means infections, parasites, and diseases can easily spread among pets and even children. That is why many landlords require potential renters for an updated health record of their pets.
Prevent Your Pet from Getting Stressed
When pets are stressed, (particularly dogs and cats), their bodies release the hormone cortisol as part of their “fight or flight” response. This causes problems in their behavior and triggers them to behave aggressively. Make sure to discuss with your vet on how to prevent or help your pet get through the anxiety. Generally, a good amount of outdoor activities is great for reducing stress.
Get Your Pet Certified
One of the best ways to show your landlord that your pet is a good renter is by presenting a Canine Good Citizen (CGC) Certificate. The CGC Program is a two-part course to help pets master 10 basic skills that will make them confident and well-behaved in and out of their homes.
Many pet trainers are CGC-certified. So if your pet is attending a training class, check with the trainer if they can provide you with a CGC certificate.
Educate Yourself on How to Best Take Care of Your Pet
Different breeds require different approaches of care. Some dogs are very independent and require less attention, such as Chihuahua, Toy Fox Terrier, and a Labrador Retriever. Other breeds, like Border Collie, Jack Russell Terrier, English Bulldog, and Cocker Spaniel, tend to be clingy and need extra TLC. There are breeds that are temperamental and naturally aggressive while some are much more patient.
As the pet mom or dad, it’s your responsibility to know your pet – his personality, likes and dislikes, preferences, etc. This way, you can address his needs properly.
Give Your Pets a Good Amount of Outdoor Time Each Day
Your pet needs outdoor enrichment too. Just like you, your pet gets bored when they tend to do the same things over again. In addition, with boredom comes depression, aggression, irritability, and other behavior problems.
Most dogs prefer to be outdoors. Try to give your pet as much outdoor time as possible. You can walk them or play with them. Remember, dogs should remain in a fenced-in area while running free. If you’re taking him for a walk, put him on a leash.
Tips for Cat-Owners
Moving to a new house is very stressful for cats than for dogs. They are very territorial creatures. They are loyal mainly to places and it takes quite a while for them to feel at ease in a new environment. In addition to the challenge of relocating, cats usually have a bad rap among landlords. Among the most common complaints against cats are scratches on walls, urine on carpets, hair everywhere, litter box odors, allergies, and fleas and mites.
So how can you make your cat a good tenant?
- Place scratching posts and toys around your home to keep them busy and entertained.
- Update your pet’s health record.
- Take measures to control fleas and discuss your plan with your landlord.
- Confine your cat within the new house or apartment for two or three weeks until he gets used to his new place.
- Inform your landlord that your cat is neutered. This prevents spraying among male cats, making them less aggressive and less likely to cause damage to property.
- Stash away fine drapes and fabrics.
If your pet is a good renter, then you are a good renter. While you can likely find pet-friendly housing communities anywhere in the country, it is still your responsibility to ensure that your pets don’t cause damage to the property and nuisance to your new neighborhood.
Hopefully, with these tips, you can make your landlord say “yes” to your pets!
Megan Jones is an author who mostly writes about camping, pet care, interior and exterior maintenance, healthy living, and related topics. Having a huge experience in renovating and remodeling, Megan has gained some valuable knowledge, which she is now actively sharing.