5 Safety Tips For Moving With Dogs
Moving is a long and arduous process, so you’ll want to simplify as much as possible. One of the parts of the process is making sure your dog makes the transition smoothly. There are things you can do to ensure your dog has a less stressful experience. We’ve put together a few tips to make moving with dogs safe and stress-free.
Start Early: Getting your dog ready for the move should start weeks in advance. You’ll be putting things into boxes and moving things around, so your dog may be confused with the change in his routine. Try to keep as close to your dog’s normal routine as closely as possible. If he’s not used to a crate and that’s how you’ll be moving him into your new home, get it out and introduce him to the finer points of crate living. Be sure to make it comfortable with a soft blanket or padding. Reward him when he explores the crate and goes in on his own accord. Another important way to prepare is to change all the contact information on his pet tag and microchip. It should include your new address and phone number.
Peace and Quiet: When you’re in the process of the actual move, keep your dog secure in a crate or room. You don’t want him to get scared and bolt, as he could get lost or hurt. Make sure he has plenty of food and water and tell everyone involved in the move to leave him alone and leave him where he is. If necessary, put a note on the door of the crate or room that warns people there’s a dog inside and not to let him out.
Road Trip: Not all dogs are fans of car rides, so make sure he’s secured in this spot with a seatbelt harness or other car safety device. If your dog suffers from anxiety in the car, consider a ThunderShirt or a vet-prescribed medication that will help alleviate the symptoms. If you’re making a pit stop during the journey to your new home, never leave your dog alone in the car. It gets really hot in there in no time at all, which could lead to heatstroke and death. As well, a dog alone in a car is the perfect target for thieves. If you take him out of the car for a bathroom break, make sure his on his leash at all times. He may run off, get lost or get hit by a car if allowed off leash.
Up In The Air: Not many dogs are frequent flyers and if flying is the only option to get to your new home, you’ll have a lot to do to be ready in advance. You’ll need to see if the airline allows for pet travel, if he will be kept in the cargo area or if he’s allowed to fly in the cabin with you. There are height and weight restrictions if your dog is allowed in the cabin and you’ll need to keep him in an airline-approved crate or bag. If your dog has to be placed in the cargo area, take a direct flight to your destination to avoid transfer delays and mistakes. Always travel on the same flight as your pet and make sure that the cargo area is temperature controlled and pressurized.
House Warming: Once you’ve made it to your new home, let your dog out of his crate in a safe way. Keep him on a leash and introduce him to his new surroundings room by room. Give him enough time to explore and sniff all the nooks and crannies. Make up a spot that’s his, complete with bed, toys, food and water. Start with a routine and stick to it. And take him on a walk of the area, let him sniff potential bathroom areas and introduce him to your new neighbors. And be sure that you’ve updated the information on his tag – we know we mentioned this before, but you’d be surprised how many people forget to update this critical info.
Moving to a new home should be a joyous and exciting endeavor, so keep your energy level positive throughout the entire process. And if you’re worried about what could happen, you have to read this hilarious story of one blogger’s move with her dogs. It’s side-splittingly funny! And as always, we welcome additional moving with dogs tips from our readers, so feel free to leave them in the comment section below.
Amy Tokic, Editor of PetGuide.com, is a passionate animal lover and proud pet parent of Oscar, a Shih Tzu/Chihuahua cross, and Zed, a Japanese Chin. Her love of animals began in kindergarten, when she brought her stuffed dog Snoopy into class with her every day. Now, she writes about her adventures in pet ownership and tirelessly researches products, news and health related issues she can share with other animal enthusiasts. In her free time, Amy loves perusing used book and record stores, obsessing over the latest pet products available and chasing squirrels with wild abandon (a habit attributed to spending too much time with her pooches).
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