Tips for moving house with a pet – dogs

Moving can be stressful for humans, but even more so on your dog when they do not understand why you are moving EVERYTHING around and their environment is changing. Dogs need a little extra TLC at moving time. Here are a few tips to help make the move easier on the family dog – let’s call her Lucy in our blog:

  • Decide if Lucy is moving with you on the day or if she will cope better being left safely in a boarding kennel until you have moved.
  • Plan well – you do not want Lucy to get lost in the moving confusion – maybe someone accidentally leaves a door or gate open. Or worse, Lucy gets scared and runs off searching for previous known territory!!
  • Ensure someone is responsible for Lucy right through the move. Family members can take turns looking after Lucy and making sure she stays calm in the chaos.
  • If Lucy is prone to anxiety in strange surroundings, you can consider calming meds for dogs – ask your vet about these.
  • You can also speak to your vet about getting an appeasing pheromone plug in device. It emits a scent into the home which mimics the calming scent released by a mother to her litter.
  • Making a long car trip with Lucy, should include regular stops to let her have a short walk and a water/ toilet break.
  • It is also wise not to feed Lucy for 12 hours before a long trip to prevent travel sickness.
  • Take extreme care if you are moving during summer – car temperatures can soar and Lucy can die from the heat!
  • Always ensure you have Lucy on a lead – you cannot anticipate how she may react in unknown surroundings.
  • Also take care to keep her identification tags on. If Lucy is microchipped, ensure they have the correct new address on file!
  • Take some of her favourite toys traveling with her – this will provide comfort with smells she knows.
  • At the new home, aim to confine Lucy to one particular room or secure outside area until most of the stuff has been moved in. This will lessen the risk of escape or injury. Fill this space with Lucy’s familiar toys and dog bed, plus feeding bowls to provide comforting smells.
  • Ensure you take along doggie scoops, plastic bags and paper towels for messes.
  • Show Lucy you are relaxed in the new surroundings – this will more easily put her at ease.
  • Keep to your normal routine with Lucy as soon as possible. Routine is familiar and Lucy should settle into her new surroundings within a few days.
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