Most real estate agents suggest that you avoid being home during showings, but your house isn’t just your home. It’s your dog’s territory. And a whole group of strangers will be traipsing through it when you are not there. This is a perfect recipe for a dog to become highly nervous and protective.
If you must leave your dog in the house, the goal is to create a safe space, such as a crate or kennel. Even if crated, your dog will probably bark or whine, which is distracting to visitors. If you will be leaving your dog in the home, legal liability is also a concern. Always check your home insurance policy to be sure that dog bites are covered. Check for exclusions for certain breeds. If your potential buyer brings a young child, even the crate may not prevent a curious little finger from being bitten.
“…even the crate may not prevent a curious little finger from being bitten.”
If you will not be home or will be unable to go home in time for a showing, you need a back-up plan. You may wish to arrange for day boarding at a boarding facility or with a family member or friend. A professional dog walker may be able to stop by and walk your dog on short notice.
If you have a dog in your family, keeping your house clean and free of clutter is especially challenging. Start by deep cleaning the house to remove pet odors. This includes carpeting, drapes, and furniture. Check for fleas and ticks which may have gotten into the house. In general, keep the pet clutter to a minimum. Make a checklist for yourself, so that you remember to remove pet beds, blankets, toys, and dishes on short notice. When preparing to sell your home, always have a plan to keep your beloved dog safe during showings.
I haven’t yet had to show a home while having pups-have you? Share your thoughts below!