Finding a dog-friendly apartment to rent can be about as hard as finding a
How to find a place for you and your dog
Work with an apartment rental service
With the advent of the web, most apartment rental services (or “finders”) in major cities are equipped with online components that make it a snap to find everything you’re looking for in a new place. Before you begin your search, look for the “dog-friendly” check box found on most of these sites. This will help narrow your search, and keep you from mistakenly getting your hopes about an apartment – only to find they only accept ferrets and hermit crabs under the terms of the lease.
Find a good dog park and ask around
Your fellow dog owners are generally a healthy source of information about owning a pet in the city. Scope out a friendly face at the local dog run, and see if you can get an inside track on who rents to dog owners. Who knows, you might even get a date out of it (for you or Fido).
Offer up some references
Nothing puts a landlord’s mind at ease more than the word of another landlord who will vouch for the non-Cujo-like nature of your pup. Before you leave your old apartment, try and get a quick letter from the owner or building manager. It can be something as simple as:
Dear Future Landlord:
Scott and his dog Frida are both wonderful. I miss them already. They lived here for five years and my property is still standing and was never once condemned during their tenancy.
The Next Steps
Now that you’ve got some prospects for a new living space, here are some other important considerations:
Proximity to parks and open spaces
Sure, you can drive to the dog park every night. After work. In traffic. When you’re exhausted. But instead, wouldn’t it be great to have a big open space for your dog right nearby? Check out the best dog parks in your area, and then contain your apartment search accordingly.
The trip to the bathroom
Like all of us, when your dog has to go, he HAS TO GO. You don’t want to have to navigate five flights of stairs or a long elevator ride while your German shepherd crosses his legs and tries to think about the desert. Try and select an apartment as close to the exits as possible.
Create a dog-friendly environment
There is a wealth of pet-accessories that really help make your living space more appealing for your canine friend. If you’re going to be gone during the day, do everything you can to create a more enriching, safer environment for your pet. Find the right toys and home potty-training devices to make your pooch more comfortable when you’re not home.
Apartment-train your dog
You and your beloved pet have to share the same limited-amount of space. So be sure and set some ground rules right from the get go. Find a dog trainer who specializes in helping dogs adjust to small spaces. Read up on how to raise your puppy with a firm, but loving hand. Your couch will last longer and your relationship with your dog will be stronger!
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