Tips for Moving House with Dogs

We’ve had a fair few members of The Pet Carpenter team moving house with their dogs over the last few weeks, so we asked them what they and their pups thought of the process and what, if anything, they’d change next time. Here are some of the team’s top tips for moving house with dogs!

Focus on Finding the Right Property

If you’re planning on moving house with your dog, or moving house to then eventually get a dog, you’ll need to account for your four legged friend when making your dream home decisions. Of course, all dogs are different and so their living space requirements will also differ slightly. However, what is important is that you check with your estate agent or landlord as soon as possible to find out that your potential property is pet friendly.

While the laws surrounding pet friendly tenancies are changing in tenants’ favour, it’s a good idea to check with your landlord or estate agent as early as possible. You don’t want to fall in love with a new home only to find out weeks later that the contract doesn’t allow your well behaved dog! It’s best to save yourself from potential heartbreak and be upfront and honest about your living requirements from the get go.

Keep Their Routine as Uninterrupted as Possible

Many dogs thrive on routine, even more so if they’re of a nervous disposition or have had a troubled past. We also know that dogs can experience their humans’ emotions such as stress, anxiety and worry. Of course, moving house is one of life’s biggest stressors, so it’s understandable that all involved are more likely to feel on edge during the process. However, sticking to your usual daily routine as much as possible, is one way of helping you both relax and decompress. It also ensures there’s some structure to your days, especially in the unpredictable lead up to moving day.

Prioritising your usual routine when moving house with dogs will also help introduce them slowly to packing and unpacking over time. If you’ve spent a few weeks desensitising them and integrating moving activities into your routine, they might be a little calmer on move day itself and the first few nights in your new place. Adding in more calming activities in the weeks leading up to moving house with your dog will also hopefully reduce any feelings of overwhelm. Things like enrichment at meal times, sniffari walks, swimming/hydrotherapy and plenty of natural treat chewing are all likely to help relax your dog.

Pack Their Belongings Last

Depending on the timeline for your moving schedule, you may need to pack up your belongings, or even vacate your current home, a few days ahead of moving into your new place. So, it’s a good idea to make sure everything is boxed and stored ahead of time. This will help ease any last minute panics or rushes. However, you don’t want to have to undo all your hard work and pre-planning in the event that moving days are delayed or you realise you’ve packed up something pretty important day-to-day!

You also don’t want your curious pup to start investigating these new, exciting boxes. Especially not with their teeth! Chewing is a popular activity for dogs that are bored. To combat this, be sure to pack their favourite belongings, such as toys and chews, last. In the same way you prepare an essentials box for humans, you might consider creating one for your pup too. Put anything majorly important in there, items that you’ll likely need immediately after moving into your new place. Things like water and food bowls, bedding, enough of their usual food for a week or so. Of course we also can’t forget a selection of your dog’s favourite puzzles, treats and toys!

Find Someone to Look After Them on Moving Day

Moving day can be intense to say the least, even more so when your exchange and complete days are the same or you’re part of a larger chain. Delays to picking up keys can throw plans completely off in a moment’s notice, causing a lot of strong emotions and unexpected stress. As we all know, dogs are incredibly in tune with our emotions, particularly stress and often respond to our feelings themselves.

While your dog may not comprehend the concept of moving house in the same way we do, they will likely feel uncertain or on edge when they see all your boxes leaving the house in preparation of the big move. It’s a good idea to try and find someone to look after your dog on move day if you can, especially if you’re planning on doing most of the lifting and shifting yourselves. Not only does this remove the risk of your dog slipping out the front door unnoticed but it will also take them away from the stressful environment for the day. If they’re used to daycare, why not book them in for an extra session? Or ask close family or friends if they can look after your pup for a few hours while you get everything sorted between homes!

Enjoy Finding New Walks Together

Once you’ve settled and unpacked the essentials, you’re ready to slot into your new daily routine. One of the perks of having a dog is how easy it becomes to socialise with other dog owners. If you’ve spotted your new neighbours have dogs themselves you can introduce yourself to them by asking for their favourite dog walk recommendations locally. If there are any additional rules when it comes to having pets in the building (such as if you’re in an apartment complex and animals aren’t allowed in communal gardens) they’ll be able to inform you of those too.

Discovering new walks is a favourite pastime for so many pups. Imagine how thrilled your dog will be at all the new trails and sniffs they’ll be able to explore once you’ve moved! While the process of moving can be incredibly stressful and emotional, we hope this light at the end of the tunnel moment sees you through your journey of moving house with dogs!

Are you currently planning a big house move? What are your top tips for moving house with dogs? For more modern day dog friendly living inspiration, follow us on Instagram!

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