The Top 7 Things to Look for When Searching for Dog-Friendly Homes

Dig collaboration with Dog Gone House Hunting. Written By Nicole Moore

Photo by  Sight Unseen

Photo by Sight Unseen

If you’re searching for a home and one of your top priorities is proximity to a dog park, you are not alone. Dogs are now one of the most common incentives for millennials to take the mortgage plunge. It is higher up on the list of reasons we’re buying homes than getting married or having children. Single dog parents, we hear you! Even if you don’t have a dog (yet), getting a pup palace is a major consideration for the future. When looking for a home for your and your pup, dog-owners have to consider what will best suit their four legged friend’s needs. Before deciding on your and your furry roommate’s newest residency, here are some features to consider:

1.Local Dog-Friendly Restaurants and Dog Parks

All dog-lovers know, a night out isn’t complete without your best bud by your side. Check out the dog-friendly restaurant scene with your pooch before dropping the deposit. In Austin, places like Banger’s Sausage House & Beer Garden, Red’s Porch, Kerbey Lane Cafe, and Rudy’s Country Store & Bar-B-Q all offer opportunities for you to bring your dog with you when you want to run out to eat or want find a close dog-friendly spot for date night so your pup can approve. You can search for more dog-friendly locations near you on Dig - The Dog Person’s Dating App! Of course, dog parks provide an excellent playground for your pup. The combination of socializing with other doggos and exercise while playing in the park will help better your dog’s behavior. (Think of it this way, less barking from your fur-baby will make for happier neighbors.)  If you are new to the area, dog parks are also a wonderful place to find some human connections. They also make great first date ideas!

2.Fenced-In Yards

While viewed a luxury to some, fenced-in yards help ease the mind of dog-owners, as dogs are much less likely to escape and potentially get hurt in a closed yard. Your dog will be able to enjoy sniffing the grass, laying in the sun, going to the bathroom, and playing fetch without being tethered to a leash. Pro tip: make sure your yard doesn’t have any dog-related hazards. Certain plants and flowers like azaleas, oleander, and jasmine berries may be toxic, and ponds or other water features can be dangerous. (Yes we had to Google what those plants look like, too).

3.Nearby Vet Hospitals

We don’t ever want to consider fighting traffic across town if there’s a crisis involving our dogs. When your pup is choking on chicken bone she got out of the garbage, all you want to do is pick her up and run her to the nearest vet. To ensure your furry friend is getting the best care possible in adequate time, look for a home with a veterinary hospital in the surrounding area (and get their magnet of information for your new fridge)! For daily reminders of how to keep your pup safe, sign up for the tips and tricks of the day from vets and trainers on Dig - The Dog Person’s Dating App.


Is the neighborhood infrastructure constructed for easy and safe walks? Check out the sidewalk scene to make sure you have plenty of route options to change-up your daily routines. Make sure those routes are safe in the day and well lit at night, too. Ask the neighbors if there are many dogs in the neighborhood and if they’re friendly and social.

5.Minimal Carpeting

Even the most well-behaved dog could stain indoor carpeting when they have accidents, run inside muddy from the rain, or knock into your table during wine night. To make sure Spot doesn’t leave spots, opt for a place without wall-to-wall carpeting. This will save time, effort, and money in the long run. Consider products we love like Ruggable for easy cleaning!

6.Downstairs Condos

If you are considering a condominium, choose downstairs living spaces. Living upstairs with a dog may annoy downstairs neighbors, as they will hear the continual tip-tap of dog paws and indoor fetching time may cause their ceiling to shake. Pups appreciate the immediate access to the outdoors on the first floor when it’s “go” time, too.

7.Dog doors to grooming tubs

What once may have been an unrealistic wish list of dog-friendly features is now more than a possibility. Ask your realtor if there are any homes in the area that have special features like a dog-door already built in or even a grooming tub! Maybe you’ll be able to sweep dog hair into the wall with a Sweepovac or have a dedicated treat closet. If a house doesn’t have a dog door, see if it would be easy to install one. What does that mean? Look for ground level walls or wood doors, as opposed to glass or metal. Finding a dog-door installer can be tricky, so also look to see if a new door with a pre-installed dog door will fit your home and style.