Moving to a New House with Dogs

Written by Posted On Tuesday, 23 February 2021 21:35

Moving to a new house often means having to explore a new city or town, which can be stressful for both dogs and their humans. Packing, traveling and unfamiliarity are big stressors for anyone doing a house or apartment move, particularly when there are pets involved. 

It doesn’t help that they can pick up on all the stress you feel. The best way to ensure less stress for you and your pets when moving, is to plan ahead. Better yet, consider the following steps:

Plan ahead

Everything is always better when you have a solid plan. This is no different when it comes to moving with your pets. Make the necessary provisions to expose them to space and routine adjustments ahead of time. If you aren’t able to walk them with the same frequency at your new home, introduce these changes before leaving. 

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Pack a bag

If you’re traveling long-distances to get to your new home, you’ll want to make all the necessary provisions for your dog’s journey too. Being cooped up in a car for long periods of time may induce care sickness and irritability. To prepare, leave packing your dog’s essentials for last. 

This will help keep them occupied while you pack and you’ll have everything they need at-hand when you’re ready to leave. Medicines, toys, treats, and food and water bowls will be some of the essential items you’ll need in the car. Speak to your vet before traveling to get the best advice for your dog’s specific needs. 

Keep moving 

Exercise and play are the best ways to keep your dog calm when traveling. Make frequent stops, where they can stretch their legs and expend any nervous energy they might have. Bring out their toys, leashes or anything you might need to facilitate play during rest stops. 

Dogs require a lot of activity to distract them from anxiety-inducing circumstances. It’s also a great way to tire them out for the rest of the journey. Ensure that they have sufficient water reserves throughout because panting as a result of stress can cause dehydration. 

Give them lots of attention

The long journey in a car to a new space can be disconcerting. The more attention that you can provide, the better. It is reassuring to them, especially in unfamiliar environments. Your dog thrives off of the attention you give them. It demonstrates love, which is beneficial for both of you.

A nice long cuddle, quick belly rub or walk around a rest stop will keep them calm. You can benefit from the quality time spent with them as well. They feed off your intention and attention so make sure to do all the things they like. They’ll also be more willing to cooperate with you if they are satisfied.

Be patient

Everyone is adjusting to the new normal that comes with moving to a new space. That includes your dog. It may take a while for them to adjust, so be patient. They will sense when you’re frustrated. This may prolong their distress, which can extend the process of adjusting. 

You will need to spend a couple of days with them in the new space. This may require you to take extra time off to spend with them. Take about 3-4 days with them, introducing separation in increments. You can start by leaving them alone for 10 mins at a time before returning, increasing it to 20 mins and so on, until they are ready. 

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