THERE’S something about the phrase “my landlord won’t let me keep my pet” that always puts me on edge.
I see it often, on Facebook or Gumtree. Recently it even came through in a group text message. That one was a doozy: “This is my adorable dog Buster; I love him to bits but my landlord says I can’t keep him, so I’m looking for a new home for him. We paid $1000 for him 12 months ago so I’m hoping to get $800.”
Seriously – trying to sell your beloved pet to recoup some of your investment? Heartless, much?
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Look, I understand that sometimes circumstances change. But when you get a dog, you’re also getting a 10-to-15 year commitment.
Didn’t the concept of moving house within that period cross your mind when you invited your fur friend into your family?
My dogs are now 11 and 12. We got them as puppies back when we were renting. When my partner and I asked our landlord if we could have a dog, at first, he said no.
But funnily enough, we didn’t rush out at that point and get a dog anyway. Instead, we negotiated with our landlord, and after six months of going back and forth, got written approval to have a pet on the property.
That’s not to say we weren’t tempted to just buy a dog and hide it – we were. Big time.
But we knew that when the owner found out (and let’s not kid ourselves, the owner always finds out) we’d have to either give up our dog up or move house.
So we went the honest route. This way, everything was on the table and everyone was happy. Because in my view? Bringing an animal into your home without being prepared and adopting the attitude of “Eh, I’m sure it’ll be fine” is just irresponsible.
And there’s an easy way to avoid all this rehoming business. It’s kick-yourself simple.
Just don’t bring a pet into a rented property without asking.
If your landlord says “No Pets”, respect it. If you’re determined to get an animal companion and they don’t budge, then look for a new pet-friendly place to live.
So, ask. And as they say, you shall receive. Or if you don’t, at least you’ll save yourself the heartbreak of saying goodbye – along with a painful and time-consuming process to find your four-legged mate a new family.
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