Keeping pets happy during homebuying and selling

By Kelly Leighton | April 24, 2018 | 3 min. read

Buying and selling a home are stressful enough situations, but some sellers and buyers also have to consider their furry family member.

Rob Jackson, co-founder and CEO of Healthy Paws Pet Insurance and Healthy Paws Foundation, is here to offer advice for your consumers on how to make sure the transition is smooth for everyone.

When buying a home, Jackson advised that consumers consider what the neighborhood is like. “By checking out Nextdoor and neighborhood groups on Facebook, you can get a feel for nearby pet lovers,” he said. “You want a pet-positive atmosphere with lots of community support, should your pet get out of the house, or even if you’re walking down the street and encounter other pets or people. Proximity to a dog park may be high on your list, or perhaps you’d like a running trail where your pup can accompany you.”

He also suggested being wary of traffic in neighborhoods you are looking at. “This is crucial for both dogs and cats. High traffic areas are a hazard for most everyone, but our furry friends pay a very high price if they get into the street,” he said.

Once it’s time for your clients to move, Jackson recommends moving the pets first.”Whether it is furniture, appliances, plywood, pipe or glass, heavy items can cause injuries and accidents. Whether they fall or are being moved, everything from a hammer to a refrigerator can seriously hurt your cat or dog. Almost anything could constitute a poison for a pet when you start packing up items in the garage or kitchen. Do not have pets around if you’re handling cleansers, adhesives, toxic liquids or anything small enough to be accidentally swallowed. Always have your emergency vet number easily accessible should the unthinkable happen. Everything from accidental ingestion of materials to physical injury will require fast thinking and a cool head. Having pet insurance can dramatically off-set emergency costs, make sure you’ve signed up at least two weeks before you pack up and move on out.”

If movers are helping with the process, Johnson said to be extra careful with pets. “From underfoot to under vehicle, pets run the risk of getting trampled or worse if they’re in the way. Pets also tend to be fearful of too many new people in the house and can behave territoriality, which could result in scratches or bites and if you have a reactive dog, the situation can escalate even further. This is true also for noise, pets can react very negatively to a lot of commotion and noise.

When listing a home, Jackson said consumers need to prepare their pets for the selling process. “If it’s possible, introduce your Realtor® to your pets so she/he knows there are pets in the home and what they look like. Realtors® are pet parents too, so they’ll understand.” He also said to put pets in a “safe spot” when there are showings.

“Put your pet in a room that is farthest away from the stampede of home shoppers and play soft music, stock their favorite toys or hide treats in nooks and crannies for a scavenger hunt,” he advised.

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