Moving can be a stressful process for us humans and our children, and it can be doubly stressful for our furry friends. Dogs thrive on routine, and the entire moving process is a break from what your dog knows and expects. Consider these five things to make sure the move is as painless as possible for your faithful companion.
1. Home Hunting
If you’re moving into an apartment, you, of course, should make sure that your new complex accepts pets. If you need help with this, most apartment hunting websites feature a “pet-friendly” search option. With apartments, you’ll also want to consider stairs. Six flights of stairs will not be fun to trek when Spot needs to go out for the seventh time of the day.
If you’re moving into a house, look at the backyard – is it fenced? That may or may not be important to you; decide before you start looking for houses. Also, look at the neighborhood’s sidewalks and walking routes to determine if they will be good for walks. Another dog lover’s home-buying criterion is the proximity to dog parks; Seattle has 14 that are off-leash! Also, unique to Seattle is the number of dog-friendly restaurants. You might want to make sure you are close to some of your favorites as well.
2. Leaving Your Old Home
If you are renting, make sure you take care of any damage the dog may have done to the carpet, wood flooring, or trim to ensure that you get your deposit back.
If you are selling a home, having a dog can be tricky. Keep your dog away during showings, and try to hide evidence of his presence as well. Pets in the household can sometimes turn off potential buyers. Try to walk your dog when you have a showing, or take him to a friend’s house.
3. Moving Day
On moving day, all the chaos from people coming and going may make Fido very nervous. Consider crating him to keep him calm, and try to keep that day’s routine as normal as possible up until the movers arrive.
Whether it’s an across town-drive or across the country, Spike might have high anxiety during the car trip. Make sure he is in a comfortable crate with towels. Ensure that he gets plenty of breaks to eat, drink, and use the restroom.
4. At the New House
Your entirely different environment will likely overwhelm your dog. Don’t allow him to explore the entire space unsupervised – this may be asking for accidents. Instead, let your dog explore one room at a time until he seems comfortable.
5. Taking Care of Business
Once you and Rover are settled, update your dog’s tags with his new address in case he gets lost. Find a new vet and a new groomer if you’re far from your old home.