Moving with dogs
Some dogs are very comfortable with traveling
in a car, and even look forward to going
for a ride. However, travel for a long distance,
whether by air or by car and especially when
the end of the trip means a new home can
be a whole different situation.
Since dogs are especially susceptible to
motion sickness, discuss obtaining an appropriate
medication for this purpose with your veterinarian.
For dogs that become anxious during long
trips, sedatives and tranquilizers may also
be prescribed. Additionally, don’t
feed your dog for at least three and up to
twelve hours prior to a long trip.
If you are traveling by air, your dog will
benefit from travel arrangements that provide
for a direct flight. This will prevent unnecessary
time away from you and limit the stress your
dog experiences during the travels.
Have your dog’s nails trimmed prior
to traveling, as nervous dogs frequently
resort to scratching behaviors. This will
limit damage to the travel carrier and will
also prevent the dog from harming itself.
If you are traveling by car with your dog,
keep it in its crate and don’t allow
the dog to put its head out the window. This
practice is very dangerous and can result
in illness and injury. Don’t leave
your dog unattended in the car for any periods
of time, especially under hot or cold weather
After you have completed your travels,
try to help your dog become familiarized
with its new home as quickly as possible.
Resume the usual schedule of feeding, walking,
and exercise, and take extra care to get
your dog used to its new home when conditions
are very different; for example, if your
old home had a big yard and your new home
has none, take your dog to the park to play
Your dog may need some time to adjust after
the stress of the move. Don’t panic
if some accidents occur during the first
few days of adjusting, as your dog will most
likely stop this behavior after it has gotten
used to the new living arrangements. Give
your dog words of encouragement for going
potty in the right place when he does so.
Just as you will do for yourself, you should
arrange a comfortable sleeping area for your
dog immediately upon arrival at the new home.
Additionally, set up food and water bowls
in their new location when you arrive. This
will help your dog to adjust more quickly
and easily and to establish its new routine.
At your new home, do a quick safety check
to ensure that both the outdoor and indoor
areas are dog friendly. If there is a fenced-in
yard, check to make sure that the fence is
in good condition and that it is free of
damaged areas that may allow your dog to
escape. Make sure that the yard is free of
hazards that could be dangerous to your pet.