Preparing to Move With Your Dog
Most families move from one house to another at least once throughout their lives. It is generally a stressful time for everyone - including the dog. Dogs sense change is coming and will react in whatever ways come naturally, either becoming extremely clingy, having accidents, or acting out.
We are currently planning a move across the country with five kids and our amazing 2-year-old vizsla pup. The move was sprung on us suddenly, and we are in the middle of selling our current house, finding a new house, and planning a 3-day drive. As you can imagine, everyone is feeling a bit anxious right now - including our dog. She is glued to my side and has even snuck into our bed the last few nights. She knows something big is happening.
Before everything avalanches on me, I decided to make myself a checklist to ensure I didn’t forget anything when it came to our precious pup. So if you are about to embark on a big move too, go ahead and steal this list to simplify your life!
Moving Checklist For Your Dog
Visit the Vet
It may be a while before you find a great vet in your new city, so go ahead and take your dog in for a checkup. He may be able to give you something to help with your furbaby’s anxiety, too. You’ll want to grab a copy of all the records to bring with you.
Map Your Move
Driving for days is not the same as riding to the dog park. You need to plan your drive, hotel stays, and possibly your stops ahead of time. You’ll need to stop every few hours to let your pup run, snack, and relieve herself.
Invest in a Harness or Soft Crate
Car safety for dogs is not talked about enough. Please make sure to purchase a car seat harness or a soft crate for traveling. A standard dog crate is never recommended, as it can cause serious injury or death in a car accident.
Plan a Play Date
The day that boxes are being loaded into a moving truck is the perfect day for your dog to spend with a friend or at daycare. Some dog’s become extremely anxious during the packing process and can’t process what is happening. Planning a play date also gives you the ability to stay focused on getting everything loaded.
Pack Your Pup’s Stuff Last
Load your dog’s bed, toys, food, water, and treats last. This will help your dog understand that she is going with you.
Plan for Anything
Keep a first aid kit in your car and have anxiety medication or an alternative on hand. Have a few towels nearby and a blanket, portable food and water bowls, treats, your dog’s leash, and a few chew toys.
Remember that your stress causes your dog to stress, so take a few deep breaths. Moving is hard for everyone, but your furbaby may need some extra snuggles to help with the transition.