From the Editor: My Parents were ‘Fur Parents’ First

March 2, 2020

- By Eric Berman

If you were to ask my parents who their first child was, they wouldn’t say my name, their actual biological first-born. They would answer with the names of their golden retrievers Fetchit and Sunny. This was in the early 70s and they were “fur parents” before there was even a term for it.

Regardless of the time period, growing up with pets is a great experience. My animals were the best companions. When I didn’t have a friend to play with, I always had one of my pets. Growing up on a dead-end street in the suburbs, having a pet seemed rather easy. When they needed to go to the bathroom, they’d scratch on the door and I’d let them out. They’d go do their business, then scratch to come back in. I know that’s not how we’d do it today, but my pets were part of the neighborhood and it worked at the time.

However, other than having doors installed in the living room so the dogs and cats wouldn’t go in (or maybe they were put there to keep me and my brother out???), I only remember one pet-specific modification we ever made to the property. It was when we had an in-ground pool installed.

Golden retrievers are known for three things: long hair, a great disposition, and a love of water. My parents understood if we had an in-ground pool, there was going to be an excellent chance the dogs would take themselves for a swim. While the long hair in the filter might be a nuisance, their main concern was if they got in that their claws would rip the pool liner when they tried to get out. Because of that, they made sure the pool had stairs and not just ladders.

Pet owners today are taking their love of their animals to a whole new level, especially when it comes to the homes they buy and live in. For that reason, you have in your hands our first-ever animal-focused edition of BSR. I also want you to know that we were intentional not to call it our “pets” issue because service animals play a role in the home buying process.

In this issue’s feature “Putting Their Fur Babies First” by Bridget McCrae on page ??, you’ll learn six ways you can help your clients find the best home for their furry offspring. In addition to the feature, the animal theme will run through most of the content in the issue including: Notes from the Legal Hotline, Legal REALTOR®, 5QW, Trending Topics, Member Benefit Spotlight and more. And because people love their animals, every author (who has one) is pictured with their pet.

P.S. I must share the official American Kennel Club names of my parents’ first two dogs because they are too fun not to share: Barry’s Lord Fetchit and Sunshine Girl of Truell Pond. Their third dog (one of the puppies from Fetchit and Sunny’s first litter) was named Eric’s Ruff-n-Tumble. Better known as Ruff!