You went through all the steps of making your move a “perfect move”. You got the right movers and you picked the perfect new house in your dream neighborhood. You finally move into your house and prepare to begin your incredible new life, but like most people, you probably forgot to do one major thing during your move—you forgot to prepare your dog for moving to a completely new place. While this might seem silly, you would be surprised to see how many dogs are miserable, scared, and feel out of place in their new homes.
Here are a few tips on how to making moving easy on your dog too:
1. If possible, walk your dog in your new neighborhood a few times before you move.
Of course, if you are moving cross-country this isn’t usually an option but the plan should include helping your dog adjust to the new smells and the new streets of your new neighborhood. If your old and new homes have backyards, make filling the new backyard with old backyard toys a top priority. This will help your dog feel “at home” in his or her new environs.
2. Stay patient and calm.
You likely have a TON going on settling into your new home but keep in mind that your dog will be the first to pick up on your mood and energy, which will quickly translate over to his own. If your dog sees that you are stressed, anxious, or worried about all of the details surrounding your move, your dog will undoubtedly not relax either. Keeping calm and sustaining positive energy will not only help you, but it will be extremely important for your dog during the move. Keep in mind that you will also need to allow your dog extra time to explore on walks or in your backyard. Relax your mind and push your anxiety about getting back to unpacking away—it will be much easier to unpack if your dog isn’t stressing out and driving you crazy.
3. Don’t stray from your routine and work hard to keep things as normal as possible.
Remember that you don’t need to change things that don’t need to be changed! Keep feeding your dog the same foods, go on walks on your normal schedule, keep your dog’s bed and toys in relatively the same place as before (i.e., if the dog bed was always to the right of your couch, put it next to your couch in the new house)—again, while your dog has no choice but to adjust to a new home, you can make it easier by creating as much familiarity as possible.
4. Help keep your dog safe by finding a place for him on Moving Day.
The chaos of packing up a home and watching movers cart everything away—not to mention being constantly under foot—can be very unsettling. Ask a friend, neighbor or boarder to watch your dog while the movers are doing their work.