Sep 29, 2011

Sooner or later someone will ask you whether they can bring their pet to your vacation home. You won't want to turn down business, but at the same time there is a risk of damage. We have a different policy at each property. At Sunset Beach Bliss we never allow pets. We don't have as much difficulty booking that property, so we haven't felt the need to open it up to pets. Plus, it is carpeted throughout, which would make it harder to clean up after a pet.

At Beech Mountain Bliss we generally do not allow pets. But we will consider them when someone is inquiring off season for a long booking - at least two weeks. However, we will only consider them if we know that our cleaner isn't busy, and we don't have a back to back booking. Just in case more cleaning is necessary. Here are some of the questions we'll ask a prospective guest that wants to bring their pet
  • How big is your dog (in pounds)?
  • Is he/she spayed or neutered?
  • How long have you had him?
  • Have you taken him/her on vacation with you before?
  • Can you provide documentation that he is up-to-date on his shots?
  • Does he have any medical/behavioral problems?
  • What flea/tick regiment is he/she on?
  • Does he wear an id collar and do you use a leash when you’re out with him? (Town has a leash law)
  • What arrangements do you make to clean up his waste?
  • How much time would the dog spend inside the unit on his own each day? Is he a barker?

I've highlighted the questions that we always ask. We want to make sure that any pet owners we rent to are responsible. We also want to make sure they are aware of the town leash laws. If we decide to go ahead, we have a pet addendum that we add to the rental agreement. A lot of owners will charge an additional daily pet fee. To remain competitive in our market - where a lot of properties allow pets - we haven't done this. But we do ask for a larger damage deposit, usually $350 instead of our normal $250.

If you allow pets in your vacation rental, you won't be able to rent to people that are concerned over allergies. We always tell guests that ask, that we have cats ourselves, and the property is older and doesn't have A/C. So they can expect pet dander. Some vacation rental owners welcome pets. If you want to make your property pet friendly, a couple of things to consider is providing a kennel, and providing a basket of pet supplies. Perhaps things like blankets, old towels, water and food bowls.

For reference I've included the pet addendum that we use below. We usually customize this.

Pet Addendum

a. The pet will be allowed out of the condominium only under the complete control of a responsible human companion and on a hand-held leash or in a pet carrier. And the pet will not be left alone in the condominium or on the premises, unless crated.

b. That any damage to the exterior or interior of the premises, grounds, flooring, walls, trim, finish, tiles, carpeting, or any stains, etc., caused by the pet will be the full financial responsibility of the renter(s) and that renter(s) agrees to pay all costs involved in the restoration to its original condition. If because of any such stains, etc., said damage is such that it cannot be removed, then renter(s) hereby agrees to pay the full expense of replacement.

c. That the renter(s) will permit the condominium owner to professionally treat the premises, including grounds (if any), for fleas and ticks. The contractors used will be the condominium owner’s contractors, and the cost will be competitive and borne by the renter. A daily pet fee of $32 will be charged to cover the cost of cleaning the carpets when the renter(s) vacates the premises.

d. That the renter(s) will provide adequate and regular veterinary care, as well as ample food and water, and will not leave pet unattended for any undue length of time. Renter(s) will diligently maintain cleanliness of pet sleeping and feeding areas. Renter(s) will prevent pets from engaging in behaviors or creating excessive noise at a level that disturbs neighbors, including, but not limited to, barking, jumping, and running.

e. That, if there is reasonable cause to believe an emergency situation exists with respect to the pet, and if efforts to contact the renter(s) and emergency caretaker are unsuccessful, the condominium owner or the owner’s agents may contact the local animal control authority and assist its staff in entering the renter(s) unit. Examples of an emergency situation include suspected abuse, abandonment, fire or other disaster, or any prolonged disturbance. If it becomes necessary for the pet to be boarded, any and all costs incurred will be the sole responsibility of the renter(s).

f. That the renter(s) agrees to indemnify, hold harmless, and defend condominium owner or owner’s manager’s agents against all liability, judgments, expenses (including attorney’s fees), or claims by third parties for any injury to any person or damage to property of any kind whatsoever caused by the renter(s) pet(s)

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