Moving is always a hectic time, whether is just across town or across the country.
Animals also find this time stressful. Dogs and cats are the most sensitive to these kinds of changes. Horses are a little more adventurous and generally have little difficulty adjusting to a new environment.
In Cesar Millan’s book, Cesar’s Way, he has some very good guidelines for making a move easier for dogs. To help a canine understand that they are moving, he recommends walking them from the old house to the new house. Since this is not always possible because of long distances, a short version can be done.
When it’s time to leave your old residence, take your dog for a long walk, then have someone pick you up along the way. Then you and your dog should get dropped off about a mile away so that you can finish your “journey” on foot. This helps the dog understand that you have moved your territory.
Once you’ve introduced them to the house that first day, take them on a number of walks around the new neighbourhood so that your dog gets a feel for his new surroundings.
Cats are a little easier since most are indoor animals. But if they are used to going out, make sure you keep them inside for at least a month. This will help make sure that they think of the new house as their home, otherwise they may decide to head back to your old house on their own.
Sometimes there is the dilemma of what to do if where you are moving to does not allow pets. Or you are moving across the country and the journey would be too hard on them. Unfortunately it is not always easy to find a new home for your pet. There are a lot of animals out there and it can be difficult to find a suitable home at times. So before you start looking to place them somewhere, you need to do some assessing. Taking into account their age, health and temperament.
It is especially difficult to place an old animal, not a lot of people want to take on a senior. Especially if they have health issues. And it is harder for older animals to adjust to change. The same goes for animals who might have behaviour or temperament issues. Just because you were able to handle these special cases, there is not necessarily someone else willing to do the same. This also applies to those with serious health issues.
As heartbreaking as it is to consider, the best thing to do in such cases is to have the animal humanely put down. It is better for them than living neglected in a backyard or being abandoned on the side of the road because the new owner can’t handle them.
Hopefully, moving for you and your pet means an exciting new adventure.
Contact Jaime Hanna with your questions at [email protected].