Vet Patrick shares advice on helping your dog deal with moving house

December 21, 2023

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A house move is a big change for the whole family, and is usually a stressful and turbulent time. Pets can often get overlooked, but may also struggle to adjust to the many changes and pick up on the general increase in stress and anxiety.

To help dog owners with a house move, our team at Clarendon Street Vets have put together advice on how best to help your canine companion accept a house move.

Our experienced team of dog vets are available to advise on an individual basis too, just give us a call or book an appointment ahead of the big day.

1. Keep to your dog’s routine

Most dogs and owners have a daily routine. This may fluctuate slightly, but on the whole, it is highly likely your dog is fed, walked, played with and cuddled at a similar time every day.

Around the time of the move, it will help your dog to adjust if you stick closely to the usual routine. Your behaviour and feelings will also have an impact on your dog’s stress levels, so if you are able to remain calm (at least around your dog!) they may find it easier to to react and behave as normal.

If you have the option of introducing them to your new home beforehand, it could help them to settle in more quickly. If not, then try to take them on some new local walks to get them used to the neighbourhood.

2. Your old home

Packing your home up into cardboard boxes can be emotional and time consuming. Especially if there is a dog ‘trying to help’!

Vet Patrick von Heimendahl recommends packing gradually so your dog will get used to the changes in their living environment over time. Also, keep their bedding and toys and core area out and unchanged for as long as possible. These familiar belongings will help comfort them if their old home is starting to look different in the run up to the move.

3. Moving day

When you arrive at the new house, you need to ensure your dog is safe and secure as your belongings are unloaded. If possible, set up a safe space in your new house immediately for your dog. Use their normal bed, blankets, toys and bowls and work on positive associations. The scents of their items will help to make them feel at ease in an unfamiliar environment. You will need to be patient with your dog during this transition period. Work on establishing their routine in the new home and stick to it as closely as possible at the start.

4. After you have moved in

A house moves bring with it a huge amount of administration. Make sure you include updating your pet’s microchip details and also updating your account details here at Clarendon Street Vets.

By following the advice above, you are providing your dog with the best chance to become happy and settled in their new home as quickly as possible.

If your dog suffers from anxiety, or you are concerned that a house move could affect them more seriously, contact us so we can help you make a plan.

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