1) Keep old favorites. Bring along your dogs bed, blankets, toys, etc from your old home. When we were packing, I was tempted to toss out a lot of our old items that were worn out anyway, but with your pet’s items it’s best to wait a while after the move before getting new because the old ones can provide comfort and stability for your dog during and soon after the move. Keeping their material items around will provide comfort for your dog during the transition. If your dog is particularly attached to a specific item, consider giving them access to it while in the vehicle on the way to the new home as well.
2) Make a plan for when and how to move your dog. My mother in law’s dog has extreme separation anxiety, so when she has moved, she takes the dog with her each time that they go take a truckload of belongings to the new location. My dogs get anxiety about being in the car, so for us it was best to just take them on the very last trip instead.
3) Have a dog-sitter the day of the move. Of course, this only fits if you won’t be taking your dog during each trip to the new place. When we moved, our dogs got nervous when we started moving big furniture around, and got progressively more nervous as we moved more and more of our things. I wish we would have thought to have Ryan’s mom or someone else who they see often enough to feel comfortable with dog-sit them for the day to spare them the anxiety of watching our things leave our old house. If you have a higher energy dog, even if they aren’t anxious, they might get in the way a lot.
4) Update your microchip information and Vet with your new address. I forgot to update our vet with our new address. I was lucky to be able to go pick up my mail at my old location that included the notice from the vet but it’s best to remember to update it ahead of time so you don’t miss important info. If your pet is microchipped, you’ll want to have the address on it updated as well.
5) Give them a chew. Whether your dogs are high energy in general, or are anxious, giving them something appropriate to chew on can help them calm down. My pugs are anxious little dogs and bully sticks are life-savers for us during high stress situations like moving.
6) Exercise them to let them get their energy out. Once you start packing to move, it can be easy to get busy and skip out on your regular walks or exercise with your dog, but keeping up with their exercise can help calm them release energy and calm down during the transition.
7) Remember your dog waste bags. When you get ready to take the trip, don’t forget to leave your dog waste bags in an accessible area in your vehicle. My sister lives next to a gas station and tons of people travel with pets, stop at the gas station and let her dogs into her yard to relieve themselves and then they don’t pick up the mess. This is really frustrating for her and is just not very polite.
8) Stay outside with your dogs. At our old apartment, I always stayed outside with my dogs when they went potty but I let them roam free and they never wandered too far away. At our new place I used leashes for the first month or so, so that they could learn the boundaries at our new home. I also wanted to be completely in control of them in case a neighbor dog came outside to meet us for the first time.
9) Don’t leave them home alone for long. The first time that we left the dogs alone at home, we just went to get groceries and a few other errands but when we got back, our dogs were really upset. After that, we made a point to leave them for really short periods of time (half an hour or so) the next two times and they were still more upset than usual when we got back, but they slowly went back to normal. I think the first few times that they were left alone, they were afraid we weren’t coming back. So the shorter time that you leave them at first, the less time they have to worry and get worked up.
10) Update your dog’s contact information on their collar.
Information provided by: homelogic.com