Moving is stressful for all of us—humans and pets alike.
You've got to pack, you have to deal with movers and maybe even some delays, and it's all happening while you're trying to get your mind around a new space. But moving can be especially hard on pets, especially if they've never lived in a new home before. All those boxes! All that noise! Their new humans just want to get settled as quickly as possible so they can focus on the important things: unpacking their stuff, getting groceries delivered, finally finding their favorite pillow after hours spent searching through suitcases (you know what I'm talking about). So how do you help your pet ease into this new chapter of life? Luckily for us all, there are lots of things we can do to make that transition easier for our furry friends:
Create a space they can call their own.
Before you bring your new pet home, make sure they have a space they can call their own. This will help them feel comfortable and secure.
Set up a bed for your pet in the same spot every time. This way, they will always know where it is and can go to it when they want to rest or sleep.
Put their toys in the same spot every time too. That way, if one of these items gets moved around by accident (which it totally won't), your cat or dog will still be able to find its favorite toy!
When it comes to food and water bowls, make sure those stay put as well! You want to create consistency so that your dog doesn't get confused by having different places for meals all over the house.
Ease them into new routines.
The first few days in a new home are an opportunity to get your pet used to their new routine.
Make sure you introduce them gently, so they can get used to the new house gradually.
Start by allowing them time outside of their kennel or crate so they can explore the area and get familiar with it. This will help them feel comfortable when they enter their permanent enclosure later on in their stay.
Try not to have too many visitors the first week, as constant attention may overwhelm or excite your dog, making it difficult for them to settle down when left alone in the house or yard at night. This isn't surprising considering how much energy dogs have!
Establish boundaries right away.
Establish boundaries right away.
The most important thing you can do to help your pet adjust to their new home is to establish rules and boundaries right away. This will set the tone for the rest of their lives in your household. As a rule, it's best to set up boundaries that are clear and fair, consistent, enforceable, respectful, kind and (if possible) kind-and-respectful.
Make it fun to learn new things.
When you're trying to teach your pet something new, make it fun! The more positive the experience, the happier and more eager they'll be to continue learning. If you're introducing a new behavior or trick, try using food as a reward. You can also set up a routine—for example, if you want your dog to learn how to sit on command before dinner every night, do that first thing in the morning so he considers it part of his schedule and therefore doesn't feel like he's missing out on something special.
Make sure they have time to rest.
It's important to give your pet time to rest, as this will allow them to adjust to their new home.
They may be so excited about being in your new home that they want to play and explore all day long, but if you let them get too tired out during the first few days of moving into a new home, it can make for an uncomfortable situation for everyone.
If your pet is on the more energetic side (like mine), make sure they get plenty of exercise throughout the day—but don't overdo it either!
Provide lots of treats and attention as rewards.
Treats can be a great reward for your pet, but they should only be given at the right time and in the right amount. A treat should be given after a good behavior, not just to make your pet feel good.
It’s important to give treats in a positive way so that your pet doesn’t get confused about what you want from them. Giving treats too often will result in your dog thinking that it has done something good when really it was just the treat giving them their food!
There are ways to make moving easier on your pets
Create a space for them to call their own.
Ease your pets into any new routines, slowly introducing changes over time so they can adjust to the new environment.
Establish boundaries right away, like where they should be allowed and where they shouldn’t go.
Make it fun for them to learn new things by using treats as rewards for good behavior or when they do something well. This helps establish good habits early on, which will make life easier when you both have to learn how to live with each other!
Let them rest whenever possible (especially in the first few days), and give a lot of extra attention when possible so that they know how much we love them just as much today as we did yesterday!
Moving can be stressful for people, so it’s important to take care of yourself as well as you take care of your pet. By following these tips and being patient with your animals, you can help them adjust to their new home and make sure they feel comfortable in it.
Wishing you health and happiness!