Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Tips For Moving With Your Dog

Moving With Your Dog.

Moving is stressful, there is no denying it. Your dog (or cat) is no exception. They are going to feel the stress of a move as well, perhaps more so as they do not have the understanding of what is happening.

Fortunately there are some things we can do to make the transition easier on our four legged friends.

Give Them A Sense Of Security.

Ensure your dog feels secure. Do not leave them at the new house alone while moving things over. You are your dog's most important security blanket.

Provide them with a safe place in the new home that they can retreat to while the chaos of the move is happening. This could be a room in which you put out their favorite toys. For Ali, her kennel is her safe place. Setting this up, with easy access gave her a place to go and feel at ease. Ali's kennel has never been used as a punishment so she willingly goes to it when she wants to feel secure.

A Border Collie laying in the grass with a toy.

Allow For Exploration.

Your new home is going to contain many new smells for your dog. Be sure to allow them plenty of time to explore the new home, at their pace.

Start with the inside of the home. Keep an eye on them as if the home was lived in by previous people there might be smells of other pets, your dog could be inclined to mark their territory. If this happens let your dog know it is not acceptable but understand your dog is not doing it out of spite, it is a sign of insecurity in it's new environment.

If your home has a yard then you will want to allow your dog time to explore their new yard as well.

A final tip for exploration is taking your dog on a smell walk through the new neighborhood once you are settled in. Give your dog plenty of time to take in the scents scents, this will provide them with a much better understanding of their new environment and it's inhabitants. Remember dogs interpret their world predominantly through their sense of smell.

Border Collie standing on rocks at lake shore.

Don't Break Routine.

Moving to a new home is always a hectic ordeal. Even after the move is complete we are left with unpacking. It can be a very busy time.

An important tip to helping your dog adjust to the new home is sticking to the routine they are accustomed to as much as possible.

Keep feeding time(s) the same. If you walked your dog at specific times each day try and keep that routine as close to normal as you can. Ali and I have 15 minutes each morning and night of what I call "Ali time". She gets belly rubs, petting and brushing during this time. She is also allowed up on my lap if she wants. If you have attention time like this with your dog try to adhere to this as well.

Keeping to the routine your dog is used to will help them retain the sense that everything is OK. Dogs need routine, it gives them a sense of security and helps them remain stress free. They do not have to worry about things like eating because they know that always comes at a certain time each day.

Border Collie playing in a pile of leaves.

Avoid Stress.

This point is as much a benefit to us as it is to our dogs. Try to make your move as stress free as possible. Dogs are sensitive to our moods and feelings. If you are stressed your dog will feel this and become worried themselves. Your calmness will help to show them there is nothing to be worried about.

Moves will happen from time to time. With a little preparation we can make the transition as easy as possible on our pets and ourselves.

If you found this article useful be sure to check some of our other articles out.

© Irwin McNeely & Border Collie Corner, 2015. Unauthorized use or duplication of this material without written permission from this blog’s author or owner is strictly prohibited. All pictures are my own & property of Irwin McNeely & Border Collie Corner.

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