Ned Mahoney's Blog
Moving to a new house means big changes for everyone involved, but for a dog, it can be an especially confusing time. While you can talk to a child ahead of time to explain to them what to expect we, unfortunately, do not have the same ability to communicate with our beloved pets about the big changes ahead. The good news is, there are a few things you can do to make the move a smoother process for both you and your dog. Ahead of time - if it's close enough, visit the new house with your dog prior to moving to familiarize them with the new environment and neighborhood. Also, pack your dog's belongings (toys, bowls, bed, food) together so you can be prepared to pull it out first when you arrive at the new house. During the move - consider having your dog stay with a friend or doggy daycare on moving day. This will save your dog from the stress of their surroundings changing during the move. You also won't need to worry about where your dog is while doors are being left open or if they are underfoot during the moving process. If moving over a distance - take frequent breaks to let your dog out to walk around and avoid feeding him right before the journey in case they are prone to car sickness. Talk to your dog in a calm voice throughout the moving process to comfort them, they can pick up on our emotions so trying to remain calm yourself will cue to your animal that everything is okay. Stay safe - before letting your dog loose into your new yard you will want to ensure that it is free of potentially poisonous plants they may try to eat and check for any holes in fences they may try to squeeze through. You will also want to update your dog's tag and/or microchip with your new address and phone number. Maintain structure - keep old bedding and toys to give your dog some familiarity in their new environment. If you are looking forward to replacing their bed, waiting until your dog is settled into the new house is ideal. Stick to regular routines that were in place before the move where possible. This includes things like walks, feedings, and times you are away from the house. Have fun - when you arrive, allow your dog to explore the new house and yard. Take them for a walk around the new neighborhood, play their favorite game with them and get them tired out so they will be more relaxed when it's time to settle in for the night at home. Bonding time - spend quality time with your dog to reassure them that moving to the new home is a positive experience. Try to spend the first few days after the move at home with your dog to spend time with them and monitor how they are adjusting. Moving can be an exciting process for both you and your dog with a little bit of preparation. Setting up ahead of time before your dog's arrival to the new home and spending quality time together not only makes for a smoother move in experience but also gives you the opportunity to strengthen the bond between you and your dog!