- Guest Blogger, Caroline Ruddy
If you thought moving was stressful for you, imagine what it must be like for your dog. Your poor pup can’t figure out what’s going on, so it’s up to you to help him through it. Here are a few ways to make moving with your dog a little easier.
Consider Using a Mild Sedative
This is definitely something that should be done under the direct supervision of a veterinarian. If your dog is freaked out by all the activity and tumult in the house, or when it comes time to drive to your new home, a mild sedative can be very useful in helping to manage your dog’s stress.
Talk to your vet about the healthiest option. Sedatives are a very common request for moving and travel, and vets often provide pet meds of this type to help keep pets calm. Don’t be tempted to use over-the-counter medication for children, as it can possibly make your pup sick. It’s best to trust your vet’s recommendations in this situation, and ensure you’re giving your beloved family member something effective and safe.
Spend Some Extra Time With Your Dog
Moving is a disruptive process in all aspects of your life and can interrupt your daily routine. Dogs live by routine. If you forget to take her out because you’re busy packing, or you’re staying up later than usual to take care of things around the house, it can throw her entire schedule off, too.
It may be difficult to make time, but try to give your furry friend a little extra attention. She needs to know you haven’t forgotten about her. Even just a five-minute cuddle session, or a few minutes chasing the ball outside can go a long way to making her feel better when you have to go back to packing boxes. The extra attention can help to alleviate her stress.
Even if your dog is no longer a puppy, is fully housebroken, and hasn’t chewed on anything for years, understand that the stress of moving may bring out some undesirable behaviors. Simply being stressed and in an unfamiliar place may be enough for your dog to “forget” his training at first. If the people who lived there before you had a dog or other pets, your dog may also feel the need to mark his new territory.
He may also chew things to relieve his stress, whether it’s your shoe, a book, or even a corner of the carpet. No matter what happens, remain calm. Yelling at your dog or punishing him is only going to make the stress and fear worse, and may draw the behavior out longer. Be patient with him, reassure him, and give him lots of love and attention. Above all, remember that it’s only temporary, and he’ll go back to his usual good dog self soon.
Caroline Ruddy is a freelance writer finally pursuing her dream of being published. She loves books and movies, especially when they include a furry friend napping on her lap.