Looking for a home with a dog!

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If you're looking for a new home and have a dog, you'll enjoy this article from my new friend, Cindy Aldridge. Enjoy!

Tips for finding a dog-friendly home:

Dog owners have an added responsibility when looking for a home to find one that is also ideal for their furry best friend. However, finding such a home is not always easy. Below are seven tips to help you find the perfect home for you and your dog.

-Refresh yourself on the relevant rules and regulations

-Check in with the Homeowners’ Association at the location you will be moving to in regard to restrictions on the number of dogs, type and size of pets. Also, check the local animal laws to prevent from being charged hefty fines.

-Review the home features and layout of a prospective home

Does the home have a yard? Is it fenced? What type of floor is installed? Floors that are fully carpeted may not be appropriate especially if your dog poops a lot and aimlessly. Hardwood and linoleum floors are easy to clean and maintain when you have a dog.

You should consider a home with a fenced-in yard. The yard provides adequate space for your dog to play, and the fence prevents your pooch from wandering to neighboring properties. A fence also keeps away strangers and wild animals that may harm your dog. Ensure that the fence is pet-friendly. For instance, a 4-foot high fence will not offer optimal protection to a German shepherd or a Labrador, as it can easily jump over.

Pet-friendly neighborhood

Evaluate a prospective neighborhood to determine whether it is pet-friendly. If you will be living in an apartment, check whether the lease allows dogs and whether there is adequate open space for your dog to spend some time outdoors.

 Find out whether there are other pet owners in the location. Are there dog parks, dog centers and veterinary services nearby? Is it a high-traffic area such that it is difficult for you to take walks with your dog even if Fido is on a leash?  As you do your house hunting, visit pet centers nearby to determine if they are ideal for your pet when you might need to leave town for a few days.  

Help your dog acclimate to the new home

While dogs adapt better to new environments than cats, you still need to handle them with special care to help them adjust to the new home faster. Once you arrive, set up the dog’s area first before you begin to unpack and organize the other rooms. Set up the play and sleeping areas. Maintain a regular schedule similar to the one you had in your previous home. This will help your canine to feel secure in the new home.

Within a few days of settling into the new home, take your dog on tour of the neighborhood to help Fifi familiarize with the new location. If possible, spend the first week at home to help the dog adjust.

The surest and easiest way to find a pet-friendly home is by working with a reputable real estate agency. A real estate expert in the area knows homes that are in the market for sale, their condition and which ones are ideal for your dog and budget. They are also knowledgeable about animal laws in the area and will inform you accordingly.