Moving is stressful enough as it is. But moving with a dog is a whole other ball of wax, one that can leave you feeling anxiety-ridden and overwhelmed.
As such, you have to plan properly. Need a little help doing so? Then read on. Here are 7 essential tips for moving with a dog.
Consider Your Dog’s Comfort Level When It Comes to Travel
Not all dogs handle travel in the same way. Some dogs have extreme anxiety over it and will experience extreme discomfort during the actual move; others are alright with it and generally aren’t phased; many fall in the middle of these two extremes.
In any case, you need to assess your dog’s comfort level when it comes to travel and work to accommodate it. For instance, if your dog hates traveling, you might consider getting him or her some anti-anxiety medication. Or, you might consider leaving a treat in your car so that your dog stays distracted throughout the trip.
The last thing you want to deal with on your moving day is a dog that’s anxious and misbehaving. Know your dog’s temperament and work to help him or her feel comfortable.
Establish a Comfortable Area in Your Vehicle
You’re likely going to be using your vehicle to transport some of your items. But you shouldn’t just jam your dog in between these items. You need to establish a comfortable, dedicated area in which your dog can relax.
The passenger seat would probably be a good spot for this. Lay a dog bed down on the seat and fill it with some of your dog’s toys. Make sure to have a dog seat belt ready as well, as you want to keep your pet strapped into the vehicle in the event of an accident.
Keep Proper Identification on Your Dog
As we’ve noted, dogs can get nervous when it comes to travel. And in some cases, when a dog gets nervous, it will run away. There is some potential of this happening to your dog.
As such, before moving day, you need to make sure that your dog is fitted with proper identification. Have up-to-date ID tags made and ensure that they include your name, new address, and phone number. You should also make sure that your dog has been microchipped.
If your dog gets away from you, and if he or she isn’t wearing proper identification, he or she could end up being lost forever. You don’t want to lose your pup, especially on a day on which you should be excited. Get those tags and make sure they’re securely attached.
If you’re moving less than 3 hours away, you don’t need to stop for any breaks. In fact, the sooner you can get your dog to the new home, the better off you’ll be.
However, if the trip is longer than three hours, you should make a stop every 3 hours or so. Let your dog out, take him or her for a walk, and give him or her a chance to go to the bathroom.
Small breaks such as these will give your dog a chance to blow off steam. Just make sure to choose a relatively open area. You don’t want your dog to freak out due to large crowds. Most designated rest areas will suffice.
Play With Your Dog After You’ve Arrived
You’ve just arrived at the new house. You’re ready to start moving everything around. But before you do, you should take some time to play with your dog.
Your dog’s been cooped up in a car for hours. He or she is anxious about what’s happening. By playing tug of war with a rope or by playing a game of fetch, you can set your dog at ease and help him or her to feel at home.
You don’t need to do this for long. 10 minutes will do. But, if you want your dog to feel comfortable, it must happen.
Prepare a Room for Your Dog in the New House
When your dog gets to your new place, he or she is bound to be experiencing some anxiety. After all, your dog doesn’t know what’s going on. For all he or she knows, he or she is being taken in by someone else.
It’s your job to reassure your dog. How do you do this? By preparing a room for your dog with all of his or her favorite things.
This room should include a bowl of food, a dish of water, preferred toys, and anything else that might help make your dog comfortable. Make sure to also have a dog bed or floor pillow available, as your dog is likely to be tired from the ride.
Consider Professional Services
Don’t have the room to transport your dog in your vehicle? Worried that something might go wrong? If so, you could consider utilizing dog transportation services instead.
There are all sorts of companies that provide these services. They make sure that your dog is safe and comfortable and get him or her to the desired location in an organized and timely manner.
There are both road and air services available. So, whether you’re moving 5 hours away or 15 hours away, you will be accommodated.
Moving With a Dog Is Stressful But Achievable
Yes, moving with a dog is stressful. No, you don’t have to let it conquer you. Put these tips to good use and your move should go off without a hitch.
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