We touched down in Rio just over two months ago!
Time has flown by, so we’re giving you an update.
The time leading up to our departure was a blur. We got confirmation of our move super late, and had very limited time to find a place to stay, get plane tickets, and prepare the boys’ paperwork.
And there were a few things stacked against us (aside from lack of time!). For one, we were traveling with three pets. Some might consider us crazy, but we follow the Lilo & Stitch motto of Ohana (“Ohana means family. Family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten”).
Asking to rent a furnished home with a pet is a small hurdle, but asking to rent a home with three pets is an advanced agility course at Westminster. Or so it seemed.
We did what we always do. We started by looking for homes that would suit our needs. That meant scouring Facebook groups, Brazilian housing websites, and Airbnb. We ignored the pet policies – that would come later. Our first priority was finding a home where we would all be comfortable.
We hit the jackpot when we discovered a one bedroom house located in a small villa in Catete, a neighborhood that we’d lived in before.
It was in a central location, had supermarkets close by, and was close to two metro stations. Plus, it had a loft with an extra bed for visitors, and a small backyard area.
Since I’m native to New York City, I’ve spent the majority of my life living in an apartment, and not the fancy elevator-plus-a-doorman-and-a-gym kind. My family has lived in a four-story walk up since before I was born, and I’ve spent the last decade on the third floor of another 100+ year old building.
Living in a house was a luxury, and I loved the idea of being surrounded by trees and a small mountain at the back of the villa.
The house was not listed as pet-friendly, so we sent the owner an introduction, described our three fur babies, and crossed our fingers.
When approaching a place, whether it be for a weekend or month long stay, I always tell them about our pets. 9 times out of 10, we are welcomed to book, even if the place is listed as no pets allowed.
Things might be different if we were traveling with, say, a 100 lb labrador, but Boogie, Marcelo, and Kitty’s combined weight is only about 35 lbs. There is (minimal) barking – I’m looking at you Marcelo – and the dogs’ favorite activity is taking a nice long nap. We travel with a dog bed, and do our best to clean up pet fur.
Luckily, we were given a green light! We booked for a month to test the waters.
As you can probably tell from our Instagram stories and posts, we love the house! And we negotiated a longer term stay with the owner, so we’re staying put.
Here are photos of our house, if you’d like to see.
It took about two weeks to fully settle in. We took trips to the grocery store, slowly unpacked, and sweat a whole lot. We arrived right in the middle of summer, when temperatures were hitting 95 degrees. We went from winter in New York to summer in Rio. It took all of us a bit of time to adjust to the heat.
Boogie especially was having a hard time, but we were able to cool him down with cold baths and air conditioning. He’s fine now, and totally acclimated. It helps that it’s fall in Rio now, and the temperature has dropped slightly. We make sure all three drink a lot of water and sometimes add water to their food to ensure they stay hydrated.
We’ve made time for fun too. We’ve been to a pug meet up, gone to the beach, and taken many long walks. Kitty spends most of his day outside and has made a ton of cat friends. Boogie and Marcelo have been enjoying lots of off leash time in the villa. Things are pretty good.