We all know how much work a move can make. Whether it is long-distance or just down the block, there’s a lot to be done. Adding a dog to the picture does not make it any easier. However, we have some tips and tricks on how to make moving with your dog as easy as ABC.
Things to plan ahead
- Study the local laws. Check if you need a new license and what the leash laws are. Perhaps there are some breed bans in place. Even if your new landlord is fine with an Airedale Terrier, some neighborhood associations, as well as local governments do not allow certain breeds.
- Microchip your dog. Also, don’t forget to put your phone number and possibly the new address on their collar.
- Ensure that your dog has identification. Finding a lost dog is not too often the occasion. If worse comes to worst, ID tag on the dog increases the odds of getting him back.
- Get a new vet. Waiting until your dog gets injured or sick is a bad idea. Surely you wouldn’t want to wander around at such times in need of a vet. Also, find out if they need any new vaccinations or preventative medications. Get acquainted with the area and see if it has ticks, heartworm, or leptospirosis.
- Locate some dog-friendly locations. If you like to take your pup to a dog park or walk by some nearby river, try and keep those habits. Maintaining a routine is beneficial for your furry friend.
- Plan for your dog’s new living quarters. Of course, you’ve made plans where every human occupant will be situated, but what about your dog? See where the best place for his bed would be. Find a spot for his food and water bowls.
- Check the backyard safety, if you have one, that is. Backyard for a dog is a treat, but before you let them roam around, make sure it is a safe fenced-in area. Additionally, look at how visible your dog is from the outside. If easily detectable, it can put him at risk of being stolen.
- Get acquainted with other neighborhood animals. Before moving with your dog, take a walk with your buddy around the neighborhood. Be mindful of backyard dogs, stray cats or any other animal that may affect your routine.
Prepare for the tip
If you are moving from a house to an apartment, it would be wise to start with the training right away. If your neighbors are close by, your pup should stop barking when you tell him so. Furthermore, if there is no doggie door at your new place, get them on a bathroom schedule.
Dogs are usually nervous when packing is the main household’s activity. Suitcases remind them of you leaving. So, a good idea would be to leave some of the boxes and suitcases out ahead of time. This will condition them not to associate those objects with you leaving. Also, pack pup’s stuff and his favorite room last, if possible. He will spend less time stressing about the abrupt and major change.
Get your dog out for the moving day. You don’t want them to get in the way of the movers. Moreover, a lot of people going in and out create many opportunities for a stressed dog to escape. If you are not able to guard him yourself, take him to a friend or a family member’s house.
Use some soft-sided pop-up crate when it comes to the ride. You can also crate train your dog if you think it is a better option. Most dogs love them, you just don’t want to force him into one on the day of the move. Don’t hesitate to advise your vet about some calming medication.
Traveling to the location
If you are moving with your dog to a further location, here are a few things to have in mind:
- Car ride will last longer. Unlike us humans, dogs need more breaks along the way. Stretching their legs and taking a bathroom break are the main requirements. Having a break every 4 to 6 hours will naturally prolong your travel time. If you plan on spending a night somewhere, make sure it is pet-friendly.
- Larger dogs are not fit for in-cabin traveling. Smaller pup can find its place underneath a plane seat, but a larger one needs to go with the cargo. It is highly safe, and hundreds of dogs travel by it. The only risk lies with the greater temperature variations.
- Some dogs are not up for a long trip. If you have an older or a sick dog, traveling can be very exhausting for him. Have a word with your vet about the safest method of relocation.
Once the moving with your dog is over
It is time to settle in, and re-establish good habits. You should focus on rules, limitations, and boundaries.
Most likely some things will differ, but staying as close as possible to the old routine is the key. If time zones have changed, get accustomed to the new schedule, as if nothing has happened. Still go for those morning walks, even if it feels like midnight to your dog for a couple of days.
Restrain from washing your dog’s blankets. Keep them smelling the same way, since a familiar sense can make him feel more at home.
Try to postpone leaving him by himself in the new home as much as possible. This may mean awkwardly taking him everywhere you go, but it will mean a lot to your furry buddy. Most dogs are place sensitive and need to learn how to be okay when left alone. Start with short departures at first, to make it more seamless.
Don’t forget the little things
Make this a fun new world. Hide some toys around the place and play games with him. Lots of treats are a plus.
Show him a lot of love. Play, walk and just be together as much as you can. Even if this is what you normally do, moving will inevitably shorten the span of time you usually spend together. Commit to spending quality time with him every day, and it will mean a great deal.
Lastly, be patient. Some dogs take a few days to adapt, and some need weeks to feel comfortable, so give him time. Be tolerant and let him get accustomed at their own speed. Moving with your dog can be stressful for both, but a little patience comes a long way. Don’t expect that everything goes flawlessly. Dogs adjust fairly easily to new scenarios, but there is a lot to deal with here. Stay calm, stick with adequate routines, and it will all work out just fine.