10 Rules for Houseguests with Pets


Clean Up

This may be a surefire way to not be invited back.
This may be a surefire way to not be invited back.

­Whatever the variety of pet you bring with you, there's bound to be added mess. Pet hair, flying feathers, dribbled kitty litter, cedar or pine shavings, and dropped pet food should be cleaned up regularly. Carry a handheld vacuum cleaner with you if you can, and keep it handy.

Pet waste should be cleaned up as quickly as possible. It's more sanitary than waiting and reduces problems with odor. People who are unaccustomed to keeping pets can be sensitive to odors that pet lovers easily ignore. When you're visiti­ng, don't risk offending anyone. If you expect to be invited back, make regular cleanup a habit. This goes for waste in the yard as well. Your pet may think the lawn is its private domain, but your host will probably disagree. The quicker you remove feces and saturate urine spots on the lawn with water, the less damage your pet's activities will do to the landscape. Your hosts will thank you [source: Pet Education].

Be considerate and clean up after your pet in public, too. Public parks that welcome pets may have cleaning stations stocked with bags for cleanup, but don't expect this nicety wherever you go. Be prepared by carrying plastic bags with you. It's good manners, and in some areas, you can be fined for neglecting this chore. Nobody likes it, but it's a necessary part of pet ownership.

Once you've cleaned up after your pet, prepare it for nighttime by planning the sleeping arrangements. Learn how in the next section.