Cats are notoriously known for their aversion to change, but dogs can also negatively react to change. For instance, changing homes can cause significant disruption. If you’re planning a move with your canine, taking deliberate steps to help them transition helps to ensure they experience a safe and happy relocation.
Use a Crate on Moving Day
Sometimes, owners who don’t ordinarily crate their dogs feel guilty about using one. A move is not one of those times. Instead, the crate ensures your dog doesn’t try to run away to escape the flurry of activity or get underfoot during the move and get injured.
If your dog escapes into a new neighborhood where the territory is unfamiliar, it could be challenging to find him because of a dog’s instinct to go straight home. Keeping your canine crated until you can contain them in a safe space goes a long way toward keeping them from getting lost or injured.
Plan for a “Safe Room”
Speaking of safe spaces, setting up a secure room at both ends of a move helps keep dogs calm and safe during the packing and unpacking phases of the relocation. The hustle and bustle associated with moving can cause anxiety for people—imagine how it affects pets! If possible, clear out a small room for your pet to stay behind closed doors with food, water, a blanket/bed, and some toys. If necessary, use the bathroom if no other space is available.
Update Tags or Microchips
Before the move, update your dog’s collar with a tag with your name, new address, and phone number. Then, if your dog manages to slip away, whoever finds him can quickly bring him home.
Many pet owners also use microchips to help identify their pets in the event they go missing. If you don’t have your dog microchipped, consider doing this before moving. Remember, the database is only as good as what you enter. So, make sure your data is current.
Visit the New Neighborhood
If possible, take your dog for a visit to your new home before moving day if you have access to the house. Put a few of his favorite items inside where he can sniff them out and feel “home.”
Even if you don’t have inside access to the home, bring your pet for short visits and neighborhood walks if you’re moving nearby. If the home’s current residents are open to allowing your dog to explore the yard—it is also helpful, even if he can’t go inside. Any familiarity you can establish will help your pet transition to your new home.
Have Your New Home “Dog-Friendly” Upon Arrival
Dogs are curious creatures, so be prepared to allow your dog the chance to explore upon his arrival. His instinct will be to sniff perimeters and explore spaces. Providing him the freedom to do this should help put him at ease. Once his curiosity is satisfied, have a room ready to contain him as the furniture and moving boxes arrive. Be sure someone can stay with your dog or visit him occasionally to alleviate anxieties or feelings of abandonment. Have all his essential items ready immediately, like his food and water bowls, toys, and dog bed.
Ready to Plan Your Next Move?
Moving is stressful for both dogs and humans. If you’re looking to plan your next move, we can help you make a more effortless adjustment and reduce stress. Contact us today for a free quote.