How to Prepare Your Home for New Pets 101

Guest Post by HomeAdvisor  Congratulations! You’re considering getting a pet, or you’re about to bring a new furry friend home to join the family. This is an exciting moment. Of course, it also requires some preparation — part of which includes readying your home for the new addition. Here’s how to prepare your home for […]

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Home of the Week: A Real Treat in Oak Brook, Illinois

Join us for a look at this 14,000 square foot home with a pet shower and spa that is perfect for any large family and their dog!

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Expert Advice on Hosting an Open House with Dogs

At Coldwell Banker, it’s clear that we believe a pet is Home’s Best Friend…

And while we truly believe a pet does make a house a home, we wanted to get the inside scoop on proper Open House etiquette for homes with pets. Here is what our Coldwell Banker experts had to say…

“Want to Go Bye Bye?”

Yes, the #1 tip from nearly every one of our agents was “take your pet out of the home during open houses.”  Christina Koch of Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate put it best with “No Family Member Left Behind.” And while some may consider finding a “safe room” for their pet, Deborah Wynkoop of Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate in Badenton, FL offers this advice…

Please take your pet with you during an open house; strangers can be very upsetting to your pets even if they are secured in a garage, etc., people want to see the entire property and no matter how careful everyone is, there is always a chance a pet can escape.

Safety and creating a stress free environment for all parties on open house day plays a major factor.  Heather Ostrom of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Roseville, CA echoes Deborah’s Advice…

Nobody wants a prison break of furry critters, nor limiting access to parts the home, it’s best to make a pet family day out of the home. Whether it’s a hike, walk, visit to the (dog) park or friend’s house. This also  helps with keeping all windows “nose-smudge-free.” 

Andree Hurley of Coldwell Banker BAIN in Seattle, Wa rounded out the idea of removing a pet during open houses with this remark:

While crating is a wonderful training tool and can be a humane way to keep a dog contained for a short time, it always causes me sadness to see a crated dog while I am touring. Consider your open house a time for everyone to take time-out to play! Find a new hike, go to a dog park or window shopping!

The Nose Knows

We laugh at the Febreze® commercials that over dramatize common household odors from cooking and pets but during an open house those smells can be a real turnoff for prospective buyers. Patricia “Patty” Spinner of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Westfield, NJ says:

Keep a bottle of Febreze® handy. Even though we don’t notice our own pets’ smells buyers can be very sensitive.

And while you’re at it, pay special attention to putting away dog beds, toys, etc. Not only are these items distracting but they could also cause your open houses guest to have allergy attacks.

And last but not least, some good news for our friends with gills :)

Dava Behrens with Coldwell Banker Valley Brokers in Corvallis, OR finished off our survey with…

Fish can stay.

For more expert selling advice click here.

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Finding Puppy Love at Home

Guest post from Darren Hoffman, Senior Manager of Products and Platforms for Coldwell Banker Real Estate.

I challenge you to find anything cuter than a cuddly, tripping and tumbling little puppy. We all love those oversize paws, floppy ears and let’s not forget about that adorable puppy breath. But to find puppy love, do you really need a puppy? Or, is an adult dog your perfect match?

If you’re thinking of welcoming a new dog into your home and have already determined which breed is best for you, your next decision should be if you should adopt a puppy or an adult dog. There is a lot to consider and it is not a choice to be made lightly. I’ll concede that the cuteness edge will almost always go to puppies, but here are three good reasons to consider adding an adult dog to your home.


Your Lifestyle

Are you a homebody or an on-the-go type of person? It is important to take a look at your lifestyle and determine if you truly have the time needed to raise a puppy. If your social or work schedule will keep you from devoting the time to take care of your little pup, you may want to consider a trained adult dog. This may help you avoid many stressful situations, including those little puppy surprises carefully left on your rug. Remember accidents do happen and we have found some cleaning tips to help keep your rugs and puppies happy.

Your Dog’s Personality

An adult dog’s personality is more developed and closer to what you can expect as a member of your family. Keep in mind, some behaviors that may have been established with a previous owner, good and bad, may be harder to change. So consider adopting an adult with a personality that fits your family or take home a pup and start molding them from day one to become the perfect match.


Your Family

If you have your own little toddlers or youngsters running around the house, you may want to wait before bringing home a puppy. Depending on their age, you may even want to consider if it is the best time to introduce a dog into your family circle. Unfortunately, too many times curious kids and dogs can accidently hurt each other. Consider this carefully, and if you do choose an adult dog, look for one that has been raised with and are comfortable around kids.

Over the years, we have brought both puppies and mature dogs into our home and found that they both require substantial investments in time and money. The rewards however are endless, as our faithful companions provide so much enjoyment and unconditional love to our family. As an added benefit, our children were able to help with the dog raising responsibilities. Let’s face it, kids will agree to almost anything to bring home a new dog and this was a great opportunity to teach them what it means to be a responsible pet owner.

Choosing to bring home a puppy or an adult dog is and should be a big decision, but taking the extra time to consider what’s best for you will help get the relationship off on the right paw.

To see what real puppy love looks like, check out the newest Coldwell Banker TV commercial, “Home’s Best Friend.”


Darren is Senior Manager of Products and Platforms for Coldwell Banker Real Estate.  With an awesome wife, three boys, two dogs and two cats, he is never bored.

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Homes for Dogs: The Story of Victor

It doesn’t take much to make us dogs happy, we aren’t complicated at all! Give us the companionship, food and love that come with a caring forever home and we will not only be grateful, but we’ll also be the best friend you’ll ever have.

I didn’t have a lot of either of those things at the start of my life. If you’ve ever watched “Hoarders” on my second favorite television channel A&E (my first is Animal Planet of course), then you’ll appreciate how crowded my “house” was as a puppy. Get this…I was one of 75 dogs that lived on a property in Lancaster! Oh, and we shared a “home” with 15 kittens, 30 chickens, 2 tortoises, a few dozen rabbits and a even few horses.

Feeding and sheltering all those animals is pretty impossible, so my diet consisted of stale bread donated from bakeries and spoiled leftovers. With a diet like that, it was hard to pack on the pounds to keep warm during the winter, so you can imagine how cold it was sleeping outside at night while keeping an eye out for coyotes.

A worker from the Cage Free Canine Camp in Culver City rescued me from that place and let me stay at her house while they tried to find me a forever home…which is funny because I already felt like I had found it. Luckily for me she felt the same way! My new “mom” is an actress but she treats ME like a star, I really couldn’t be happier. If you want to see just how happy I look, check out the new Coldwell Banker TV commercial – you can find me at the 36 second mark!

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Homes for Dogs: Max’s Story of Finding Home

Hello. My name is Max. It wasn’t always my name, but it’s the name that suits me best. It’s what my mom calls me (she’s the human in my home) and it’s the name that saved me. My first given name that I know of was actually, Breezy. Yes, Breezy. Did they not realize I was a male? Frank, Fido, or Fin would have been better, but you’ll see my name, much like my story, improves with time.

Sure I’m going to be on the Academy Awards as part of the new Coldwell Banker TV commercial, but the road to get there wasn’t an easy one for this two and a half year old Maltese/Yorkshire Terrier mix.

My story begins a few years ago when I was found by animal control in a field and picked up as a stray because I had no collar, ID tag or microchip. I’m not quite sure who my owners were, but if you think being abandoned in a field is bad where I was headed next wasn’t much better.


Come on. Who could resist me?

You see I got sent to a “high kill” shelter in an area with a lot of animal cruelty and abandonment. Not cool at all, but because of this reality, the shelter only keeps the dogs they find for a total of 5 days. If I wasn’t claimed by the end of the fourth day, then I was scheduled to be euthanized on the 5th day.

My “time” at the shelter was nearing a close when I unfortunately caught a cold. Not a big deal, right? Well, evidently dogs with colds are deemed unadoptable (which surprisingly isn’t even a real word) and I was put back on the “kill” list for that day. Not good…

But that’s not the end of my story thanks to The Dexter Foundation, a local non-profit dog rescue and adoption agency. The Dexter Foundation called to check on my status as they had previously been informed about my situation, and after hearing I was about to be euthanized, they swooped in quickly to rescue me. They found temporary foster care for me while I was put up for adoption and given the name “Breezy.” Again, not the greatest of name choices, but these folks did save my life so I have to cut them some slack. While with the Dexter Foundation I got a microchip, was fixed and received all the necessary vaccinations. They even shaved my coat as I was extremely matted.

My owner (a.k.a. Mom) found me on as she was looking for a male dog to rescue/adopt and just happened to be searching for a dog my breed and age. Thank you fate for stepping in! As soon as she saw my picture she just knew I was the perfect pet for her. As you can see, I’m very photogenic.

She contacted the Dexter Foundation and arranged to go and meet me in person the next week at a local pet adoption event. I fell in love with her immediately and I could tell the feeling was mutual, but sadly she couldn’t take me home there and then…as much as I wanted her to. My owner had to go through a home visit and interview process to ensure she was a qualified owner for “Breezy” and that her home was pet friendly.

This is me after a long walk with mom.

This is me after a long walk with mom.

They were very concerned that I would escape as I had a few times before while foster care. Within a week, “Breezy” (or the dog soon to be named Max!) was now living with a new mommy! I will admit it was a very stressful first few weeks, more for mom than me, but we soon fell into a routine and it’s been bliss ever since. Now, I couldn’t imagine life without her and I know she feels the same way about me.

I get to go to work with her every day at the Siltanen & Partners ad agency, and I know I’m a part of a really big family there.

Who knows what my life was like during those first two years. I don’t like to think about it. Pretty soon after being adopted they discovered a lump on my leg, which when removed and biopsied was found to be a pellet from a bb gun. Yes, I was shot in my early life out in the “field.”

Sure I have a little skip in my step from this wound, but I’ve got an even bigger “spring” in my step now that I’m in a healthy, loving environment that I can truly call home.

If you want to give a dog a home, take a look at what Coldwell Banker is doing with their Homes for Dogs Project.

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