• David Truchalski

Tips for moving with pets

Change has always been an integral part of modern life. At one point in our lives, most likely moving is something we all have experienced. Whether it's when we move for college or when we finally come together to find a new apartment and finally into adulthood. As natural as it may seem to us, our pets often face the burden of stress related to their move.

Our pets are really passionate about their environment and changing it can cause a lot of stress and anxiety. Also, for a dog in particular, this may be the scariest experience that has ever happened to them. They do not know where they are going or who is going with them. However, there are certain things that any caring owner should consider when moving with their pet.

Plan THE move ahead

Before even thinking of packing your bags and loading them in the truck, consider collecting records of your pet’s vaccinations or vet visits as these can often be the most difficult to track. Ask your vet for an extra set of records in case the move takes you far away from home.

If you travel by plane, make sure to opt for a direct flight instead of transfers; these are much more traumatic for your furry friend. If you are traveling by car, look for motels that welcome pets ahead of time to avoid any stress on yourself and on your pet. If you move to another state or move between states, it's always prudent to become familiar with rules and regulations regarding pet ownership. Moving furniture around for packing is another problem. Make sure you know what furniture your pet finds more reassuring and try to save those for last, if possible. And once your reach your destination, consider having your pet walk around the neighborhood prior to moving everything first. This will allow your pet to become familiar with its surroundings and help ensure less stress and anxiety.

Pack your pet's stuff

Finally, when the move arrives, make sure you remember to pack your pet’s belongings. Identification tags and vaccination records will be useful. The loading of your packed boxes should be relatively fast and should be done in the absence of your pet to ensure they can get used to the final environment.

Be organized when packing. Dogs are very intelligent and they can tell when something is happening and they will get anxious. Make sure to bring the essentials to keep your dog happy such a litter box, or scoop and plastic bags, paper towels in case of an accident, leashes, toys, and food. These will make for an easy transition. Also, try to not pack their stuff until the last minute and make sure you let them smell the contents of the box so they know their stuff is going with them.

Make your dog feel loved

Talk and touch your pet often. Continuing to talk with your dog can be comforting. And even if dogs do not always understand everything we say, they certainly know the sound and tone of our voice.

Our tone is a way to let our dog know what is happening and how we are feeling. When we use calm and reassuring words with our dog, this can make them less anxious. Touch is also something that can be very powerful to convey our feelings about what is going on in the moment. Petting your friend behind the ear or in the neck can help relax. This is especially important during the actual move. Take a few minutes and sit down and give your dog a good massage. This will work wonders during the difficult transition.

Do not leave your dog alone

Do not leave your pet alone when preparing for the big move. I know it can be difficult to try to prepare everything because there is so much to do.

If you have to leave your dog, leave it with a friend or family member while shopping. Better still, if the move is not too far away, let your dog visit your new home before moving. Dogs like to explore and sniff out new places. Allowing your dog to feel your new home and the whole new environment before unpacking or even bringing something inside can bring them peace of mind.

Make your dog feel secure

Help your dog become familiar with the new environment. Introduce your pet to new neighbors and people you know. Make sure you go to people and ask your dog to sniff them. To make sure your dog adapts quickly, start a routine as soon as possible.

If you walked your dog every morning in his old house, try to keep doing it in his new home. A routine is a good way to acclimatize your dog. This will allow your dog to become familiar with the new place and will make them feel secure knowing just little has changed. The move itself may be overwhelming for us but let's remember it is for our pets as well. Prioritizing our furry babies can increase their enjoyment and security about the new place.

Remember that loving your dog and showing them affection is the most important thing you can do for them. It can be difficult and difficult to move to a new place, but following these guidelines and being there for your best friend will help your dog and you feel right at home again.