SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— If struggling to find affordable housing in the Bay Area wasn’t bad enough, pet owners have an added variable to deal with when searching for a home.

We’re certainly experiencing a housing crunch; some would even call it a crisis. Dr. Jennifer Scarlett with the San Francisco SPCA said many guardians have had to give up their beloved pets or have had to forego pet adoption because of the housing crisis. There are however, some things renters can do to make the process to find a new home easier.

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“Bring up the subject with the landlord early on. In fact encourage your landlord to meet your pet. It’s always best to have a face to face conversation if that’s possible,” she said. Dr. Scarlett even suggests providing your landlord with a pet resume.

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“It’s always easier for landlords to rent to people without pets, so what we’re trying to do is to personalize our pets by creating a resume that talks about your pet’s best qualities,” she said.

You can include things like the fact that they’ve gone to obedience school or if they’re a cat you can say that they’re litter-box trained. These are all ways to show your landlord that you’re a responsible guardian.

Occasionally you’ll find apartments with a ‘no pets’ rule that’s not being enforced. Dr. Scarlett says it’s not a good idea. “The market is so tight that a landlord can suddenly enforce those rules leaving you in a crisis. What we’ll see over and over again is those animals wind up in the shelter or people wind up without homes.

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It’s all about creating a good relationship early on. Bring it up early and show your landlord that you’re a great guardian.