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House Hunting as a Pet Owner

woman hugging her dog

Moving is stressful enough — and the growing anxiety your pet feels as the stacks of boxes get higher and higher only makes it worse!

According to a recent survey, 87 million households have pets — which means a lot of pet owners move each and every year. It’s not surprising that 68 percent of house hunters say their home-buying decisions are impacted by pet policies. Moreover, 43 percent of families would be willing to move for a pet, especially if it meant a fenced-in yard, more room, and the ability to change flooring types.

Here are three things to keep in mind when you are house hunting as a pet owner.

1. Look for a pet-friendly yard.

If you have a dog, you know the importance of outdoor space. When it comes to a pet-friendly yard, you want to look for:

  • Potential for a fence: It’s okay if a fenced-in yard isn’t on your priority list as you’re searching for a new home. However, you want to find an outdoor space (and a homeowner’s association, if applicable) that allows for a fence. In most cases, five feet is high enough. If your dog is a jumper or if wildlife is a concern, you may want to opt for a taller option.

  • Room to play: If possible, you want a yard that’s big enough for your four-legged friend to enjoy. If not, though, look for a house with walking trails, open fields, or dog parks nearby.

  • Safety features: Be sure to remove any toxic plants and avoid dangerous lawn treatments. Additionally, create a shaded area for your pet and give them access to a bowl of water.

2. Consider indoor features for your furry friend too.

If you have a big dog, durable flooring is important. Look for bamboo, cork, vinyl, or tile for scratch-resistant and easy-to-clean options. When it comes to bathrooms, make sure you have a shower or a tub that allows for indoor baths. Check for safe stairs too, especially if you have older animals. Consider a stair runner and night lights if needed.

3. Help your pet adjust to their new home.

Soon after moving, create a safe space for your pet. Add a soft bed, their favorite toys, and a bowl of water. As you unpack, take breaks to throw a ball or walk your pup. Take your time as you both explore your neighborhood, letting them sniff and get familiar with new smells. Give them a special treat (like a Kong filled with peanut butter) or a new chew toy for long stretches when you’re setting up your new space.

Did you know that The Urban Dog Group is a Pet-Certified Real Estate Agent?

This certification means that we specialize in finding the perfect spots for pet owners in Central and Southwest Florida. Whether you’re looking for a home near a pet-friendly beach or a ranch house with a big backyard, we can help you as you search. Reach out to us today!

Let The Urban Dog Group help you with your real estate needs. Contact Christine Elias at

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