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Tips for moving home with your dog

Pet Care
There’s no doubt that moving to a new home can be stressful for everyone involved. There’s the stress of packing your entire life into boxes, organising removalists, and coordinating your schedule with cleaners. With all the hustle and bustle, it’s too easy to overlook the stress our little furry friends might be going through. Don’t fur-get, they’re moving homes too!

Author: Pete, thisisneat.com.au

With that in mind, here’s our top 4 tips to help prepare you and dog for the big move.


1. Get to know the new neighbourhood!

An anxious dog is only going to make your move that much more stressful. We know dogs can be territorial, so once you’ve secured your future home, it’s a good idea to gradually introduce them to the new neighbourhood.

If possible, map out a route from your current location to your new home. If you’re moving suburbs and the distance is too far, try finding a local dog park in the area. Walking them along this route or visiting the park at least once a week, will help familiarise your pet with all the new sights, sounds and smells. Gradually increase exposure and when the time comes to move, it’ll already feel like home.

2. Keep consistency during the move

Dogs are super perceptive and will inherently know something is different when they begin to smell moving box after moving box. It’ll be difficult to avoid disruptions to your pet’s routine during the move, but keeping things consistent will be better for everyone involved. Try your best to keep their feeding time, walking schedule, and bedtime the same every day. When you finally do move in, you can use some of the same tips in our adoption article to Help your Newly Adopted Pet Adjust at Home.

It might be a new life but don’t fall into the trap of starting completely over. You might feel the need to purchase new toys, but keeping their favourite raggedy blanket or that old dog chew will help reduce your dog’s anxiety. When they’re playing with their toys, they’ll still feel some control in their lives when so much is changing around them.

3. Prepare, prepare, prepare

Hopefully you still have a few weeks before the big move. Be sure to use this time wisely. Apart from the obvious preparations, you may want to hire professionals to reduce the workload.

Hiring removalists to pack and unpack, repairman to fix any damages, or end of lease cleaners for an end of lease clean, will clear your schedule to address your dog’s needs. If you’re meticulous planner, a moving house checklist may help to help coordinate all the various tasks that you’ll need to accomplish. Research local pet laws for the new neighbourhood, find a new veterinarian (sharing copies of your dog’s vaccination records), and ensure your pet has ID tags and their microchip details are up to date!

4. Safety on the big moving day

Picture this on moving day. The removalists arrive and begin loading the truck, leaving the door completely wide open. 30 minutes in and you’re asking around if anybody has seen Charlie. Not quite the start to the day you had expected!

If your dog isn’t crate trained, don’t be embarrassed to hire a pet sitter or ask a family member take responsibility for looking after your dog. It may be a good idea to create a day pack for them, including some food, their favourite toys, and any medication that they might be taking on moving day.

Embrace the new

If you prepare yourself and your dog for the upcoming move, it doesn’t necessarily need to be a stressful task. At the end of the day, remember to give your dog the attention and love they deserve, and in return, they will give you the unconditional love that you’re familiar with.

Now isn’t this the paw-fect beginning to moving into a new home?

RSPCA QLD
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