Imagine the following scenario. You’re in need of a place to stay, but in addition to yourself and your stuff, you’ve also got your pet to think of. Looking around for options that are pet-friendly, you find the selection to be somewhat slim. What should you do to maximize your chances of finding a temporary home that will allow you to bring your pet along for the ride? Here’s a breakdown on a few steps you can take to give yourself a better shot and tracking down what you’re looking for.

Brown Wooden Center Table

Know Your Pet(s)

Not all pets are equal, at least so far as it comes to looking for housing. Some temporary spaces will only allow for specific pets, cats and dogs, for instance. In some cases, they might only allow for a limited number of pets, or pets that meet precise size qualifications. Finding spaces for larger dogs, particularly, can present a significant challenge. Be sure you know your pet(s) and keep that information well in mind as you search.

Get Your Papers In Order

The more information you have, the better. Records of obedience training, vaccination history, and more will help show a potential landlord that you’ve got a good pet on your hands and that you’re a responsible owner, which will aid in situations where you might need to negotiate for pet accommodations. Beyond that, references about you and your pet’s good nature will come in handy. If you can get a letter of recommendation from a veterinarian, that’ll be a good start. A good word from any past properties that you’ve stayed at will also be an excellent source to help bolster the case that you and your pet are worth renting to and making room for.

Search For Your Options

Your first instinct might be to head to an internet search database to look for potential apartment complexes. Sources like The Animal Humane Society and PETA keep lists of various apartment locators that can help track down suitable temporary living spaces that might allow pets. Specific locators, such as Adobo, allow you to search by city, and the PETA listing even categorizes different locators into the various states they cover.

The benefits of going through an apartment locator are widely known. As SF Gate points out, in addition to the performing a lot of the legwork and helping cut down on the time it takes to search, locators are useful when you might have special requirements, like pet accommodations:

“An apartment locator has access to special databases and other programs used to obtain highly detailed information about rentals. The locator will call landlords and apartment management staff to clarify policies for special needs and conditions. The methods allow a locator to find an apartment that suits your more specific requirements, such as a complex that allows large dogs for a pet owner or a landlord who will rent to someone with a felony history.”

Going for an apartment isn’t the only option, though. You might also try scaling back your search and concentrating on renting a space from an owner-managed property instead of a large apartment complex. According to Zillow, his is because those smaller properties are often more willing to be flexible on terms and provide the accommodations you’ll need to bring your pet with you:

“Large apartment complexes are mostly likely to have size and breed restrictions in their pet policies. Landlords of individually-owned properties are more likely to be flexible and accept large dog breeds on a case-by-case basis. Use keywords like “pet friendly” or “dog friendly” in your search filter to narrow down rental listings.”

Whatever route you decide on going, be sure to keep all your options open, and stay flexible yourself when you’re doing your search. You might not find exactly what you’re looking for off the bat, you might not find a property that fits all of your needs at all, and you may very well end up having to pay a bit more to accommodate your pet, but if you can get the essentials covered, you’ll at least have the most important criteria on your list covered.

Black Flat Coated Retriever

Be A Responsible Guest

Above all else, make sure to stay on your best behavior — wherever you end up staying. You’ve got to present that not only are you a responsible pet-owner and will keep your little one under control, but you must also display that you’ll be a great overall tenant who won’t cause waves.

Refrain from doing anything that might jeopardize your standing with your landlord, like raising havoc or illegally subletting the property you’re staying in. As a word to the wise, many owners and property managers check for such behavior stringently, using hi-tech tools like sublease monitoring by Sublet Alert, so minding your “P’s and Q’s” is a must in such situations.

Be mindful, be respectful, and be courteous — common sense and good manners will help you secure that temporary home for your pet and maintain it until you can make other arrangements if you choose to do so.

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