Pet Friendly - RasZoBai
 
I have noticed over the past few months that a lot of people are putting their pets up for adoption because ‘they are moving and cannot take their pet with them’. Having just moved, I can appreciate the predicament people can find themselves in when trying to find a rental property that allows pets. There’s nothing more frustrating than finding the perfect place, scrolling down the webpage and seeing ‘No Pets Allowed’ printed in bold letters. I understand that for some people, having to move into a dwelling that does not allow pets may be the only option. BUT, I do have a problem with people simply putting their pets up for adoption because they’re moving and the new place doesn’t allow pets. These past six weeks, we have been going out of our way to make sure our pets had a place to stay while we moved. Our two friends graciously offered to house Rascal and Zoe for FIVE AND A HALF WEEKS! Trust me, this is no easy feat! They took care of feeding, cleaning and loving those furry monster- something I will always be incredibly grateful for. It was incredibly important that we found a place for them to stay where they were with someone familiar (Kimmy used to live with both R and Z). And even after we brought them over to Kimmy’s, we had TWO other places as a backup in case we needed to do a little switch-a-roo. Leaving them at a shelter or anything along those lines never even entered my mind. It was absolute hell not being able to live with my cats for so long. I was determined to find a place that we, and when I say we I mean ALL of us could live together. The minute I saw a place that said ‘No pets’, I immediately stopped looking.

We ended up finding the perfect place- one that allowed pets. I found that most places were okay with the cats, but had huge issues with dogs. It didn’t matter that Bailey doesn’t bark, weighs one pound over the ‘small dog’ weight class and is completely house trained. The second I mentioned the word ‘dog’, people practically hung up on me. When we found our current place, I wanted to do cartwheels all over the place (and I would have…..if…you know…I could actually do cartwheels). We signed our lease and started to make arrangements to reunite our furry family.

I strongly believe that anything worth your while isn’t easy. This new place is gorgeous- we REALLY lucked out with it. So when we were told that we couldn’t move in (after signing a lease) because of the cats, I wasn’t surprised another obstacle had been thrown in our path. The rental has a basement, and the basement tenants were deathly allergic to cats. As all of you renters know, you cannot be evicted for having pets. Because we had signed our lease, there was little that could be done to prevent our move in date. In the end, the basement tenants decide to look for somewhere else to live.

Within all of this, we were asked if we could get rid of our cats. And I can understand why to outside parties, that would be considered the easiest solution to the problem. But there’s no way on God’s green earth I could give up my cats like that, and here’s why. I took on the responsibility of caring for those two lives years ago. I take great pride on my ability to be a responsible individual. Simply ‘giving my cats away’ would be considerably irresponsible of me. Why would I ‘get rid’ of the pets that I have been caring for nearly four years, simply because my new place didn’t accept cats? Yes, this new place is beyond beautiful. But you know what I love more? My animals. They are a part of our family, and there’s was no way we were going to simply give them up. I had barely made it through the five and a half weeks of being without them. And that was with me going to snuggle their butts off every third day during my lunch hour.

The whole point of this story is, if it came down to my house or my pets, I would do whatever I need to do for those furry monsters. It was a choice I made years ago to give them the best possible life. It’s the same reason I spend money on good food for them, on annual vet checkups to make sure they’re okay. It is my job to care for them to the best of my ability. So yes, I understand that there are people out there who need to ‘get rid’ of their pets because they’re moving. And yes, I know that there are circumstances out of people’s control that force them to give up their pets. But to all those people out there who simply drop their cat or dog off at a shelter because ‘they are moving and can’t take the pet with them’, you clearly didn’t put enough thought into either a) getting your pet in the first place or b) thinking about where you were going to live. I was willing to move out into the country if it meant that I could live with them. Why? Because I made a promise to those furry little faces, and I will do whatever is needed to keep it. THAT is what it means to be a pet owner.

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Rascal, enjoying some Z's in his new home
Laura
6/18/2012 07:23:36

Omy. I can completely sympathize with the "Pet Friendly" check box completely dimishing the rental search results on kijiji/craigs. It's a hurdle! When I lived in Calgary, it was a long stressful process to find a place that accepted my cat (One cat!) Eventually, I was able to wheel a deal with a private landlord who at first was skeptical. I paid an extra $350 on the last months rent and signed a form saying I'd steam clean the carpets on my time and dime at end of lease. Was it worth it? (I can't even answer the question because of the obviousness of the answer :) OF COURSE. Glad your pack has a lovely place to call home!

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6/20/2012 09:27:14

I can't get over how many places are agaisnt pets. It doesn't make any sense either, because there are SO many pet owners! I guess it's just another reason to try and own LOL. And I totally would...if it didn't cost so much money!

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6/20/2012 11:25:27

I couldn't have said it better! Amen!

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7/6/2012 01:37:28

In Ontario, especially, I don't feel anyone should be giving up their pets when they move. Tenants are protected in that landlords CAN'T have a "no pets" clause in the lease. Plain and simple.

In QC, though, its a completely different story. According to recent surveys, only 3% of landords allow pets. Tenants have absolutely no protection there, which is why thousands of animals get dumped off at shelters on moving day, July 1st. So sad.

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7/10/2012 00:11:18

I enjoyed reading your articles. This is truly a great read for me. I have bookmarked it and I am looking forward to reading new articles. Keep up the good work!

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