8 Pet Goals All Responsible Owners Should Achieve

National Responsible Pet Owners Month

As pet owners, we all love the furry, scaly, slow-moving, or feathery animals that share our homes with us. We know that owning a pet is a very rewarding experience, but we are also aware of all the time, energy, and responsibility that come with taking care of an animal.

In celebration of National Responsible Pet Owners Month, we want to help you become an even more responsible and caring pet owner. Whether you’re looking for your new four-legged best friend or have had the privilege of caring for a special animal for some years now, here are 8 things you can do to ensure that your pet is happy and healthy!

Choose a Pet That Fits Your Lifestyle – It’s so easy to cave in to a cute face, whether it’s that super friendly beagle, sweet Tuxedo kitty, or furry-as-all-get-out Siberian husky. Resist and choose a pet or breed of animal that fits your lifestyle. Your future best friend needs to have the right energy and temperament to fit your way of life and your family’s needs.

Pet-Proof Your Home – Pets are curious creatures, especially when they’re first introduced to your home. It’s wise to not leave out your favorite shoes or that expensive handbag when your pet isn’t being supervised. Consider putting safety locks on the cabinets in your kitchen and bathroom, and cover your power outlets, at least until your pet becomes more familiar with your home. Keep dangerous objects out of reach by putting them up high, using a baby gate, or closing doors to keep your pets out.

Make Them Feel at Home – Give your pet their own special corner for them to enjoy nutritious food and plenty of water. Also, make them feel completely at home by giving them a comfy bed in a designated spot in your home. For social animals, this could mean snoozing peacefully somewhere in the living room where you and your family and friends gather. For others, it might mean nodding off in a quiet space away from noise.

Give Them Plenty of Exercise – Remember to give your furry buddy plenty of love and attention by playing with them! Keep a variety of pet-friendly toys and puzzles around for them to play with and enjoy, and be sure to give them plenty of exercise to keep them happy and healthy. Don’t forget to let them interact with other animals and people regularly as well!

Keep Them Tagged – Sometimes our pets are a little too adventurous and wander off by themselves. In case this happens, be sure to put a collar with ID tags on your pet or microchip him. Doing this will ensure that your pet is returned to you more quickly and more easily!

See the Vet Regularly – Whether it’s for an annual or routine visit, it’s important that you take your pet to see the vet on a regular basis. Along the same lines, remember to bathe and groom your pet on a regular basis. It will depend on the type of pet and breed that you own, so be sure to ask your vet what’s best.

Get them Spayed or Neutered – All too often, countless animals enter shelters nationwide every year. Do your part in decreasing the pet population by spaying or neutering your furry friend.

Be There for the Long Haul – When you adopt a pet, you are committing yourself to caring for an animal for its whole life. Just like in any relationship, you will have good and challenging times together. Prepare to invest time, energy, and patience in your pet. Even if you and your pet have to work to overcome separation anxiety, chronic health problems, or house training, it will be worth coming home to your friend every single day!

If you’re ready for a pet but your housing situation isn’t, the experts at The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Elite Properties can help! Call us today at (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298, and we can help you find your dream home for you and your future pet!


10 Easy Ways to Get Out of a Decorating Rut

home decor

It’s happening again: you wake up, reluctantly dragging yourself out of bed as the sunlight streams through your curtains. You casually look around your bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, dining room, and living room as you prepare yourself for the day ahead, and you just feel so uninspired. It’s like a scene out of Groundhog Day – you feel like you’re living the same day over and over and over again. You’re Bill Murray, but instead of repeating the same day constantly, you’re trapped inside a dull space that no longer brings you any joy. Will this cycle of misery ever end?

The answer is yes! All you need to do is shake things up a little bit. After all, doing or seeing the same things too often can get old in time. In celebration of Groundhog Day and for everyone out there who feels like they’re living in a decorative funk, here are some handy tips to help you feel inspired once more:

Rearrange the Furniture – One of the easiest ways you can get your creative juices flowing is simply by rearranging the furniture. Swap out works of art around your space. Make one of your chic living room chairs your new desk chair. Heck, even moving your sofa off your wall can make a world of difference (by the way, February is Pull Your Sofa Off the Wall Month!).

Clear Your Kitchen Countertops – Does your kitchen feel a bit overcrowded? Try taking everything off the countertops and temporarily placing them in a different room. Look at everything that used to grace your countertops – the coffee machine, the spice rack, the toaster, your trusty cookbooks, and even the plethora of dishtowels you had hanging around – and reevaluate what you really want in your kitchen. This should help clear up some space, reassess what you really want and need, and give your kitchen a cleaner, sleeker look.

Give Something a Paint Job – Whether you’d like to freshen up your walls, a piece of furniture, or the frame of an old mirror, a new coat of paint can really help give a room a whole new look! Don’t be afraid to take a risk. After all, it’s only paint, and if you don’t like it or grow bored with it, you can always use a different color later!

Make a Gallery Wall – Do you have a few favorite works of art or photos that you haven’t really put on the wall yet? Try putting them in frames and creating your own gallery wall! Experiment with color and placement until you’ve got it just the way you like it.

Try a New Shower Curtain – Sometimes your bathroom can feel like new with something as simple as a new shower curtain. Choose to go big with a bold and beautiful design or opt for a clear or white curtain to make your bathroom appear larger, more open, and more luxurious.

Swap Out Accessories – Small changes can make a big difference. Take the time to go through each room, take stock of your accessories, and see how you can change things up a bit. Look at your blankets, rugs, pillows, figurines, and even the window treatments to see what you can do to transform your space. You’d be surprised by how versatile some pieces can really be!

Change Out Your Bedding – Tired of the same old bedding greeting you every night and morning? Consider reversing your quilt or comforter or switching it out with a duvet from another room! Don’t forget to switch out the pillows as well. To experience the whole effect, give yourself an extra minute or two to make your bed every morning!

Try Something Completely Different – Sure, you have your own sense of style, but sometimes seeing the same ol’ same ol’ can be dreadfully boring. Get out of your comfort zone a little bit and buy or do something totally unorthodox for you. Paint your front door a bright, happy color. Splurge on that patterned chair you fell in love with. Adding a few different touches here and there can really help you break out of your decorating rut and make you fall in love with your space all over again!

Revitalize Your Coffee Table Space – Still have the same books collecting dust on your coffee table? Here’s an easy solution – try setting out a handful of small books or one large, sleek picture book. Feel free to leave the large book open on one of your favorite pages to see if inspiration will strike.

Visit New Stores – If you’ve passed by a store, were curious about it, but never went in, you officially have our permission to go check it out! Take your time and look at how items are arranged by color, shape, and texture. Unleash the artist inside you and explore some uncharted territory. You never know what might move you!

Did you know that social media is also a great place for you to find some inspiration? Check out our Instagram page to help you get creative and say good-bye to those Groundhog Day vibes stat!