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Moving day can be extremely exciting or daunting, especially with dogs around. We love our furry pals and their companionship but they can also get in the way, potentially wreaking havoc on anything and everyone around. Dogs also have an insatiable appetite for playing at whim, often at the wrong moment, such as moving day.
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, over 36.5% of the American population owns a dog. Alleviating undue stress on ourselves as well as our beloved pets can make a huge difference as we transverse cities, states or countries.
If you are finding it challenging to keep your pooch(es) at bay during your move, here are some tips to consider so everything is smooth sailing.
Enlist Some Help
If you have an ample amount of furniture and boxes, moving can become an all-day task. However, trusting a friend or family member who will happily chaperone your pet for a few
hours, while you sort your items out, will prove to be a huge relief. They may even feel up to the task of taking your canine to the park to help burn off some accumulated stress.
If there is no one available to watch your pet, then a designated spot in the home, such as a room, the backyard or even a gated corner will ensure that the pathways are cleared for everyone at work.
Unless you know for a fact that others won’t mind your dog jumping on them or licking their legs, it’s important to be considerate when moving. Dogs are excitable when experiencing a change or when they are around others. Therefore, it is important to take thoughtful precautions to ensure the safety and sanity of everyone involved.
Inform movers there is a dog present so they know what spaces to avoid and whether or not your pet is calm enough to handle. If your pet gets agitated easily, keep him somewhere quiet and away from others.
The little things that you do, as an owner, will also highly impact how your dog reacts. Consider your dog’s needs as well. According to the dog behaviorist, Cesar Milan, one should always work with a dog’s instincts, not against them. If your dog has been holed up in the house all day, he will probably be bursting with energy, so his instinct may be to dart outside at first chance. Furthermore, try not to pack everything at once because this may also startle your pet. Instead, gather your things into a box each day so that your pet gets used to upcoming changes.
Plan Ahead and Take Precautions
In addition to your own box of essentials you won’t want packed away — extra cash, phone charger(s), toiletries, garbage bags, etc — make sure you set aside from items for your pup, as well. Keep his or her bed, food and water bowls, and favorite toys handy as moving day draws closer. The more familiar you can keep the environment, the better, and keeping their items out can reduce their stress.
Safety should be of the utmost importance, especially on the open road. Many owners assume that a dog’s head hanging out the window is safe but the opposite is actually true. Some states can even fine up to $1,000 for an unrestrained pet. A crate or kennel is found to be the safest mode of traveling for a dog. Other implements, such as seat belts and harnesses can be purchased at your local pet supply store.
Once you’ve reached your destination, give your pet free reign to roam wherever he or she pleases within the confines of the home. This process will help them adjust to their new space. It can take dogs a few days to acclimate to their new environment so never leave your dog unattended right away and try to create a calming, stress-free environment whenever possible
so that they feel safe and adjust accordingly.
The stress of a move, paired with the excitement of a dog is more than enough to handle. Keep things as normal as possible for your pet. Take extra care in ensuring that you, your pet, as well as those whom you depend on for assistance, are safe and happy.