Summer is here and school is out and many of us may be thinking of or are already planning a move to a new home. Moving is always a big event for everyone, including your pets, and can be very stressful and disruptive. So take a deep breath and a break from packing and think of what we should do to make the transition to a new home as easy and stress free as possible. If your move takes you to another city or a great distance from your current residence, make sure you can find a vet in your new area and ask people for references. Make sure your pet is up to date with vaccinations and arrange to have your pet’s records transferred to the new location. You should also update your pet’s identification tags and microchips with your new address and phone number and be sure to find out where the emergency 24 hour vet hospital is located.
You should also try and make arrangements to have your pets stay with a friend or relative on moving day. You don’t want them to become overly stressed with the commotion of movers coming in and out of your home or be under foot or worse yet, escape out an open door.
Be sure to leave your pet’s bed and toys and feeding bowls in place until the last minute to help your pet not feel that he is being abandoned. Try to keep your daily exercise and feeding routine as consistent as possible and spend as much quality time as you can with him. This will help to reduce your dog’s stress when he sees items being packed away and moved around.
If possible you should take your dog to your new home several times so he is somewhat familiar with his new surroundings and will not be overly surprised when moving in. When you do move into your new home, take your dog into the house with you and slowly introduce him to each room. Show him where his food and water bowls are located, his bed and toys, and show him the way out to the yard so he doesn’t have an accident trying to find the door. If your pet is used to having a doggy door make sure you have one installed as soon as you can to keep his routine consistent.
Also make sure your new property is fully fenced with no spaces to get through or under and be sure gates are secured. If you let your dog out in the yard, stay with him for the few days until he is comfortable in his new location. If your dog does escape he will be very disoriented in the new area, so be careful.
Moving day is stressful and very tiring so it may be a good idea to go out to eat.
You could also plan ahead to bring food with you or arrange for delivery so you don’t leave your dog home alone in a strange place. This will only add to his stress and he may feel lost and abandoned.
So start planning and packing well in advance and, if he is so inclined, let your dog jump in to help and have a safe and stress free move.