If you’re like many pet owners, your dog is probably like another family member to you. Keeping him safe, happy, and healthy is likely a priority, and if you’re about to embark on a real estate transaction, there are several things you’ll need to think about.Whether it’s preparing your new home for your pet to be comfortable or keeping him safe during the selling process, dogs come with their own set of considerations. For the safety of everyone involved, it’s best to be prepared and have a good plan in place before making any decisions.
Leave him at home
It’s tempting to think about bringing your dog to a potential new home so that he can get a feel for it; after all, it will be his home, too. However, it’s best to leave him behind if you’re going house-hunting or on a walk-through. Until you’ve signed the paperwork and the keys are handed over to you, the home belongs to someone else, and they may have allergies or other issues that your dog will agitate.
If you’re out with your dog and spot an attractive open house, take him home first or ask a friend to sit with him while you go in. You never know what the homeowner’s situation will be; they may have aggressive dogs, themselves, or kids who are afraid of animals. Best to be cautious and do your house-hunting alone.
Keep him put up
If there are times when you happen to be home when a real estate agent brings a potential buyer over and you don’t have arrangements for your dog, it’s probably best to take him for a walk or keep him in a kennel for the duration of their stay. This will ensure that both your dog and the clients stay safe, especially if you have a small pet who can easily duck out an open door.
Even if your dog has been trained before, it can be helpful to go over a few things with him before you begin the process of buying/selling. Making sure he knows the commands “down”, and “stay” are especially important. You can find some great advice on how to get started from Cesar Milan here.
Prepare your dog
Getting your dog used to the idea of a move can be difficult, but it’s a great tool to have in your belt if you want to keep his anxiety at bay and make the process easier for everyone. Once it’s safe to take him to the new house, do so as often as possible and let him explore. Allow him to check out the yard and any spaces that will be “his”, such as the area where he’ll sleep. It’s also helpful to put his favorite items–toys, bedding, etc.–in spots similar to where they were in the old house. This will cut down on confusion and help him get acclimated more quickly. For more on how to make the entire process easier, check out the ASPCA’s helpful tips.
Hire the right movers
Making sure you have the right people around on your big day will allow you to push your worries away and focus on the job at hand, so do some research on movers in your area and make sure they’re okay with working with your pet, especially if he’s a breed that is typically aggressive or if he’s wary of strangers. Make it clear to the movers what you expect of them in regards to being around your dog and communicate with them about where he’ll be on moving day–for example, if he’ll be closed up in a specific room until the end of the day to keep him safe–so there is no confusion. You can use this handy tool to find movers in your area and even check out their prices to compare.
Armed with these tips, you can rest assured that your dog will be happy and will not interfere with the real estate transaction process.