Posted by: secondchancehumanesociety | September 16, 2008

Pets and Property Owners

Lucky - Author of the Week

Lucky - Author of the Week

Last week’s Pet Column discussed issues involving pet owners that felt they needed to surrender their pets. One of the more common reasons pets are surrendered are because the family is moving and can not find a home that will allow for their pets. Property owners have every right to establish a “no-pet policy” and many have developed such policies after having a very negative experience with irresponsible pet parents. Unfortunately, the result has led to fewer opportunities for responsible pet parents to find rental properties. Additionally, shelters like Second Chance are responding to increasing requests from families feeling the need to relinquish pets. 

This situation could be remedied if certain standards for pet owners and property owners alike were respected and employed. If prospective tenants impressed upon potential landlords their knowledge and practice of responsible pet ownership, property owners might recognize that responsible pet owners typically make responsible, good tenants. Below are some ideas to help pet parents demonstrate their candidacy as a good tenant and pet parent:

1. Create a dossier or “pet resume” about your pet, including such documents as proof of spay/neuter, current vaccinations, indications of regular veterinary visits, and obedience or other training school diplomas;

2. Provide written references from former landlords and neighbors, dog trainers, groomers, and veterinarians specifically discussing your pet;

3. Offer to sign a pet agreement with the property owner.

4. Encourage the potential landlord to meet your well-groomed, well behaved pet and provide a cute endearing picture of your pet;

5. Invite the landlord to see your pet in its current setting, and to check on the pet after move-in;

6. Always clean up after your pet;

7. Make sure your pet is spayed or neutered and explain how this makes for a well-behaved, healthier pet.

8. Describe your plans for providing appropriate exercise and attention for the pet daily, and your arrangements for the same when planning to be away;

9. Confirm your disallowance for letting your pets roam the streets;

10. Mention how you control dog barking and other pet nuisances that would disturb neighbors.

11. Emphasize points about your pet’s age, activity level, characteristics and personality/ breed traits that help make him or her a “good tenant.”

12. Communicate something special about your pet’s personality, and how much you care about your pet, reflecting your attentiveness to your pet.

13. Give examples of your pet’s good behavior, and your responsibility. (Has your dog been to obedience school or had special training? If your dog has lived in apartment or rental before and is accustomed to it, be sure to say so. If you have more than one pet, let the landlord know how well they get along and keep each other company while you are away. If your cat uses a scratching post, say so and also note if your pets are house/ litter box trained.)

14. Mention if you are a member of the Second Chance Humane Society or other animal organization.

By following these guidelines, perhaps your efforts in being a responsible tenant and pet parent will convince more property owners to open up their homes to pet families, ultimately reducing the numbers of homeless pets – such as myself. My name is Lucky, and not because I was lucky enough to be rescued by Second Chance Humane Society but because the lucky person that adopts me will have a devoted companion with floppy fluffy ears and a joyful spirit. Come meet me today!

Wags, Lucky

Call the Second Chance Helpline at 626-2273 to report a lost pet or learn about SCHS Spay/Neuter Vouchers, Volunteer & Foster Care and other Programs. Visit to see our adoptable pets. Responses to Pet Columns can be sent to



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