Moving is stressful for us, but imagine being a dog. Your humans are packing away all your things, but you have no idea where you are even going! We know they will love their new homes, but we need to make sure the process is as stress-free as possible for our beloved pets. Here are some things to think about when it comes to moving with your dog.
You can always train and treat your dog around packing and boxes. If they seem to be bothered by the loud noises of the tape and boxes moving, make them a safe area of their own. Put a bed/crate, enrichment, and toys, and even your T-shirt or socks to make them feel at home (if they don’t eat them). Turn on some music for them to drown out the loud moving sounds. If you have movers that will be in the home, this is the best option for them anyways. Moving their crate/bed and all their toys and food should be one of the last things you pack.
Routine is extremely important for dogs. Structure gives them purpose and the lack of structure creates anxiety and stress. On the moving day, walk them as you normally would and feed them their meal. If you are moving out of town, make sure they are relaxed before they hop in the car or plane. Use CBD or calming treats, or even medication to help calm them down. Talk to your vet about what could be the best option for your dog. If you are moving close by, drop your dog off at their favorite friend’s house or daycare so they can play all day! A tired dog is a happy dog, and they will be thankful they do not have to watch you move their things and listen to furniture crashing!
After you have everything settled in, bring your dog in on a leash and show them each room. Simply close the doors to rooms they are not allowed in or gate off the area (Link to CPP gate). Refrain from shouting or punishing your dog at all around this new house; make it a positive experience even if they may have accidentally done something wrong. Move the furniture once. Avoid frequent adjustments in the first couple months if you can. Setting up a consistent area for their food, toys, water, and bed is also important.
Walk your dog around their new neighborhood and get social! Bring them to meet your neighbors and introduce yourself. They will be so excited to meet new friends. Be sure to do your research on your new city or town. Read the leash laws, dog barking ordinances, and make sure all vet records are sent over to your new vet. Many cities require all pets to be licensed and vaccinated within a couple days of moving.
The one key thing about moving with your dog is not to forget about their wellbeing. Moving is tough on them too and everything you do to make that process smooth can help to prevent behavioral issues after the move. Often dogs can fall back into bad habits when they move houses, and you may have to re-train them on certain things like potty training. Just be sure to be patient with them and take every day as a new day!
Find more pet safety and health tips on our blog here.