Living With A Roommate’s Pet

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Does your new roomie come with a pet? Having all the benefits of a dog or cat (someone to greet you when you get home and offer unlimited unconditional love!) without all of the responsibility and cost might sound like the perfect setup, but there are a few other things to consider before deciding to bring a new pet into your home.

A Trial Run

If you have the time, a few visits might help you to assess if there are any problems before you commit to a new living arrangement. If you can identify a hyperactive dog, an aggressive cat or irresponsible pet owner in advance, you can avoid a difficult situation altogether. A trial period might also be something to consider before a 12-month lease is signed to give both of you a chance to test things out.

Set Expectations

Your roommate might insist that you never have to take care of their pet, but let’s face it, sometimes work runs late, travel comes up or pets just have immediate needs. If you’re comfortable (and happy to) take on the occasional role of caretaker in exchange for some pets and snuggles, great! It might be helpful to establish your role early on and just how much you are willing to do to avoid any confusion or resentment.

Clean Up

It can be a challenge to keep an apartment clean according to someone else’s standards, but a pet introduces an entirely new set of expectations. It will be important to discuss tolerance for full litter boxes, overdue dog grooming and excessive pet hair. These are things that can sour a roommate relationship quickly.

Who’s at Fault?

There may come a time when your roommate’s dog or cat bites someone, a shoe is devoured, or an accident happens somewhere less than ideal. Sometimes things just happen, but warning visitors of your pet’s behavior and remembering to remove anything of value from access could avoid a tough situation.

Hopefully we’ve helped you consider some of the more unpleasant situations that might arise when moving in with a roommate with a pet. Now, you can get back to snuggling with your new furry friend!

 

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