Published on: 10/13/2020, updated on: 11/08/2021

How to Create a Safe & Healthy Environment for Your Pet in Your Rental

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Although pets entered our homes and our hearts long ago, it seems like more people than ever are now adopting pets. In fact, according to the American Pet Products Association, as many as 67% of U.S. households have a pet. And, because renting is also trending among Americans, there’s also been a rise in the demand for pet-friendly rental apartments.

However, in addition to finding that perfect pet-friendly rental, there are also many other considerations for those renting with a pet. From finding the best amenities in your neighborhood to preparing your apartment to be a safe and healthy environment for your pet, this guide will get you started. 

Generalities

There are certain things you can do to make sure any pet is safer in your rental. First, be aware that pets may be more sensitive than people to certain chemicals in cleaners and care products. Likewise, they may also be sensitive to certain ingredients that don’t affect humans, such as aromatherapy or essential oils. As such, make sure you get to know your pet and research the ingredients that might harm them. 

Namely, safer alternatives include using natural or non-toxic cleaning products, as well as natural fragrances and less potent air fresheners that could cause breathing problems. Similarly, make sure you regularly open the windows to your rental to let in the fresh air, even during winter months. This is an important aspect for your own health, as well.

Meanwhile, keep in mind that certain plants may also be toxic for your pets — especially if they try to bite or eat them. Once again, educate yourself on which plants might be dangerous for your pet and steer clear of them. Then, with a little research, you’ll surely find the best alternatives. 

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Below are some specific tips for two of the most common types of pets found in American households.

Create a Safe Healthy Environment dog

Dog

Dogs are very intelligent and active pets, but there are a variety of breeds with various needs. Therefore, it’s best to read up on your particular type of dog to find out if there are any extra precautions you need to take for them. Generally, most dogs will need the following in or around the apartment:

  • A dry place maintained at a comfortable temperature
  • A quiet place to rest
  • A safe hiding place for moments when they feel afraid
  • Plenty of toys to prevent boredom
  • A regular schedule to relieve themselves
  • Opportunities for socializing near your home
  • Access to a clean area where they can eat and drink fresh water

If you’re a renter and looking to adopt a dog, consider a breed suited for apartment-living, especially if you rent a smaller apartment in a larger city like San Antonio or Dallas. Although there are plenty of green spaces in these cities — and many pet-friendly communities — the pandemic has shown us that it’s best to prepare our homes and be ready to entertain our pets indoors, as well.

How to Create a Safe Healthy Environment for Your Pet in Your Rental cat

Cats

Many people believe cats make the perfect indoor pets because of how self-reliant they can be. However, cats are also very intelligent and active, and they also require constant attention. So, similar to dogs, ensure that the following are available in your home for your cat:

  • A dry environment maintained at a comfortable temperature
  • A quiet space (because cats can startle easily)
  • A safe hiding place for when they need to be alone or feel in danger
  • Easy access to a litter box, which needs to be cleaned regularly
  • Opportunities to climb and rest on high ground to observe their environment
  • Toys to play with and items and surfaces they can scratch to maintain their claws
  • Access to a clean area where they can eat and drink fresh water
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Furthermore, cats are very territorial, so if you’re moving, try to gradually introduce them to the new place. Also, consider placing items that have their scent throughout the new home. Then, keep them indoors for a while after the move to prevent them from trying to find their old home. 

All pets are different, so make sure you pay attention to what your own companion needs. Because they are very smart, they’ll be able to signal whether they feel uncomfortable or need something in particular. Being mindful of their needs is important, and researching and reaching out to people who have pets similar to yours — especially if you own a more exotic one — will help you know what’s best for them.

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