How Dog Owners Can Make Moving Day as Stress-Free As Possible (For You and Your Dog)
If you think you’re stressed out during moving day, just imagine not knowing what’s going on and being confused about why people are rummaging through your home taking stuff away. One of our number one priorities on moving day should be the wellbeing of our canine pals. Here are some ways to make this typically anxiety-ridden day run as smoothly as it can.
Keep your dog as far removed from the fray as possible
Probably the number one tip for any dog owner on moving day is to keep their dog as far away from the action as possible. If you have a friend with a dog, schedule an all-day play date. Ask a family member to take your dog for a few hours. You can always board your dog at a local dog care facility as well – this way you’ll know your dog is safe and being cared for while you deal with other responsibilities.
If you’re hiring professional movers (which is usually a good idea for most moves), you should think about how they will interact with your dog and vice versa. Not everyone can get their dog completely out of the house on moving day. If your dog must be around, there are some things you can do. If you can, try to keep your dog in a closed room for the majority of the move. Let your movers know that the back guest room, for instance, has a dog in it and that they should move the rest of the house first. They can call you when it’s time for the last room and you can take your dog for a walk while they finish up. You can leave your dog in a crate or kennel in a removed area. Always let your movers know about any pets in the home and place a sign on the crate that says “I’m easily frightened, please don’t touch” or something of that nature.
Tire your dog out beforehand
It’s said that a tired dog is a good dog, and this rings true most of the time. Get up early and take your dog on a lengthy walk before the move begins. This way, no matter where you put them during the move (a kennel, in your garage, etc), they will be tired out – and thus less anxious.
Consider travel accommodations for longer moves
If you’re moving far away, special accommodations will need to be made for your traveling pet. If you’re flying, you’ll need to figure out whether or not your pet can come onboard with you. Most airlines allow smaller dogs (15 lbs or smaller) to fly in the cabin with you, as long as they are in airline-approved pet containers and can be stashed under the seat. Most airlines will require a certificate from your vet stating that your dog is up-to-date on all of its shots (check here for more tips on flying with a pet).
If you’re driving, consider talking to your vet about anti-nausea medications, as many dogs get carsick. Try to feed your dog a few hours before you begin the trip, as full stomachs and car rides don’t mix well for many animals. Always travel with proper restraints – usually a dog crate. And be sure to bring some entertainment (toys) for your dog – they get bored too! Here are some more good tips on making a long drive with a dog.
You’re more equipped to handle the stress of moving day than your dog is. So when the time comes, try to do everything with them in mind. Make proper preparations for long travel, get them some exercise prior to the move, and if possible, keep them out of the way when the movers come.