Moving with Your Dog Made Easy

With career changes, family situations and the need for more or less living space, most of us will move at least once during our lifetime. To a human, a new home can be exciting and adventurous. But did you know that sometimes your dog can find the same move to be devastating?

Avoid the Doggy Drama

While some dogs adjust quickly to a change in scenery, others can resent the slightest difference, which is why uprooting your dog from the familiar surroundings he's called home can be confusing, frightening and traumatic. Your dog can find himself disoriented and stressed at the hustle and bustle of the move, as well as overwhelmed and overloaded by all the unfamiliar sights and smells of your new home. That's why it's good to be prepared at every stage of your move.

Know Your New Home

After you've made the decision to move to your new location, make sure you do some research about your neighborhood. Are there any requirements or restrictions regarding pet ownership? Also, be sure that your new home is ready to house your pet. Go over the backyard and make sure that everything is in order. Make sure your fencing is secure and that toxic lawn chemicals are out of reach of your canine companion. Also, take note of the weather. A different climate could create a need for new pet products.

Driving With Your Dog

If you're driving to your new home, we suggest driving with your dog the day of the move. Many dogs find car travel extremely distressing and some may even get carsick, so be prepared to make many stops along the way. Before you leave create a pet pack with everything your dog might need on the trip – medications, a favorite toy, fresh water, food, treats and an old T-shirt with your scent on it so he has some familiar scents to take with him to his new home. Plus, don't forget a leash for when you make rest stops. And, even if your dog doesn't typically get carsick it's better to be safe than sorry, so make sure you also pack paper towels and plenty of plastic bags.

Flying With Your Dog

Not all moves are able to be done by car, so if you have to fly to your new destination, make sure you have everything you need to get your furry family member there safe and sound, including a recent health certificate by your veterinarian and a pet carrier that complies with your airline regulations. Before the flight be sure you take your dog for a long walk and don't feed him too much. And most importantly, try not to sedate your dog for the trip unless it's absolutely necessary.

Settling In

When you finally make it to your new home, spend some time playing with your dog and reassure him that everything is OK. Before you unpack, remember to remove the old ID tag from your dog's collar and securely replace it with the new one. Then allow him to explore and familiarize himself with the new sights and smells. While you're unpacking, try not to disturb your dog's new area. Having a secure place to go to is important for your dog in an unfamiliar place. When time allows take your dog out for a walk around the new neighborhood. Make sure you give him time to explore everything and get familiar with his new home.

Moving is always a stressful time, for both you and your dog, but with the proper planning and a little bit of patience you can help your loyal companion make the trip and adjust to his new home in no time.