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How To Ease Your Dog's Anxiety When Moving To A New Home


Moving to a new home is exciting, but it can be hard on your family as well as your dog.

Your dog may be more attached to their home than you realize, causing them stress and fear when the time comes to move house.

We understand how much your dog means to you, we have our own dog and they are part of our family.

This article will teach you how to ease your dog’s anxiety when moving to a new home.

Dog Phobias, Anxieties and Fears

Phobias in dogs happen when they are around a specific situation such as a thunderstorm or fireworks. This can occur every time they are around this situation. Anxiety, on the other hand, is when a dog thinks that a situation may happen, such as separation anxiety when you put your shoes on, take your coat out and get ready to leave.

Fear, on the other hand, is when a dog has an instinct that something bad is about to happen. Their bodies prepare for freeze, fight or flight. This is an instinct in most dogs and a big part of how they survive.

Most fears, anxieties and phobias develop during a dog’s life, especially after they are one year old. Some anxious feelings do not develop until the dog is of senior age and has other health problems that play a part in their anxiety.

If Your Dog Could Talk

Your dog, if he or she could talk, would most likely tell you that your home is their safe place. New places scare them at first and make them behave badly, in some cases. When moving your dog into a new home, they will most likely feel insecure or feel stress. They may feel so unsure of their new environment that they exhibit symptoms of fear or anxiety. Indoor “accidents”, bad chewing behavior and whining, barking or howling may be signs that your dog has a bone to pick with you.

What Should I Watch For?

These signals are important to recognize in your dog. At the first sign of stress, if you calm your dog right away you may avoid a panic level situation. A stressed dog will be looking around anxiously. Their ears may be back close to their head or flat. Their mouth may look like a grimace or be tightly closed. On the other hand, some dogs show stress by panting or holding their breath. They may drool or tremble. Keep an eye out for the hair on the back of your dog’s neck to stand up. If allowed to progress, there may be stronger symptoms of anxiety.

If stress and fear signs keep showing up, your dog may start to have symptoms that range from mild fear to panic and anxiety. Be on the lookout for the following in your dog:

  • Trembling
  • Tucked tail
  • Withdrawal
  • Hiding
  • Lower activity levels
  • Escape behaviors
  • Diarrhea
  • Licking
  • Biting
  • Drooling

How To Prevent Anxiety

In addition to keeping your dog’s normal, calm behavior in mind, there are different ways to help a dog make the move to a new house. Even though moving is a stressful, busy time for you, it is important to keep your dog calm through your own behavior.

Dogs often pick up signs of stress from their human friends, so be sure to be calm around your dog. Along with managing your own stress level, here are some tips on keeping your dog calm:

Pre-Move Visits

Obviously if you are moving quite a distance away from your current home this would not be possible. However, if you are moving nearby, visit your soon-to-be new home as many times as you can with your dog before moving in full time.

Play in the yard with your dog and spend time in the living areas that he will be in most. Reinforce good behavior with treats and love, giving your dog a good feeling when he is in the new house. If you can, have some relaxed time together reading a book or taking a nap as well.

All these activities will not only get your dog used to the sights, sounds and scents of the new home, but they will leave your scent behind as well. When you move, it will not be so foreign.

Patience

This may be obvious, but give your dog a break and let him or her adjust at their own speed to your new home. Some dogs may be okay right away and that is great, but other dogs may need time to adjust.

Keeping your own calm attitude will help your dog, who looks to you for cues on how he should react to certain situations. If he senses you are calm and easy in your new surroundings, he will calm down as well.

Protection

It will probably be best to keep your dog away from all the action on moving day. Keeping your dog at a friend or family member’s house during the actual move may be the safest thing for them for the long term.

Once you have unpacked and made a living space for your dog complete with feeding station, it can be time to introduce them to their new home for good.

Keep your dog away from the boxes, suitcases and other moving debris that may cause them fear or anxiety.

Routine

Do as much as you can to keep your dog on their same routine. If you are used to getting up at a certain time of the morning, keep that up. For example, if your pattern is to take your dog outside first thing in the morning, then let them back in and feed them when they have finished, that routine should go on as usual.

Follow walk patterns as far as time of day and length in addition to feeding times. If you have to change certain things because of longer drive times to work, for example, ease into the change if possible.

Once your dog has settled in, new changes will be easier to implement.

Keep the Old Stuff

You may have the urge to buy new toys, a new bed and other new things when you move into your new house. Taking that tired old dog bed with you may not be high on your to-do list, for example.

Before you toss your dog’s old bed, though, consider how it will make him or her feel to have their familiar belongings in their new space. It would be much better on your dog to have tried and true toys, bedding and other things around them that are familiar.

These things are comforting to your dog, so do not leave them behind in favor of new stuff.

Attention, Please!

Lavish your dog with attention and spend lots of playtime together, take walks and even try teaching them a new trick or two. When you move, you may be overcome by all the details involved and your dog may start to feel neglected. Combine this with the fear and anxiety they may already be feeling and you could have a stressed out dog on your hands.

Even though skipping a walk is the last thing on your mind, anything goes when you are in the middle of a major move. While you may let some things lapse when you are in the middle of a move, commit to spending quality time with your dog daily.

This will boost your dog’s good feelings and mood.

Ease Into Separation

You will have to go out and run errands, go to work and other things right after you move. Life goes on, right?

As far as your dog is concerned, this may be part of your routine. Consider that they are in new surroundings, however, and try your best to reassure your dog that they will be okay when left alone.

As we mentioned, having familiar things around them such as their bed, their favorite toys and other items will help ease their transition. It is a good idea to put off leaving your dog alone as long as you can in the new home, even if it means having a dog sitter or relative stay with them for a bit.

Easing into leaving them alone by making only short trips out is a good next step.

Leave toys stuffed with treats or even safe, new toys at first to get them distracted from being alone.

Scent

This may sound comical, but spend time at your dog’s level and leave your scent where he spends the most time; near the floor. Have some playtime on the floor with your dog, which will put him in a good mood and leave your scent to remind him that you are there.

Leave a blanket, pillow or item of clothing with your dog that has your scent just to reinforce his good feeling.

Safety

Beyond keeping your dog calm and reassured, it is also important to keep your dog safe. Earlier, we recommended that you keep your dog away from the activity and chaos of moving day itself.

Not only will this keep them away from any anxiety causing situations, it will also keep them safe from heavy furniture, open doors and windows and other potential dangers to their physical safety.

Make one member of the family responsible for your dog as their first and only job of the day. Keep your dog on a lead or in a safe location and give them time and attention.

When taking your dog into their new outdoor environment for the first time, be sure to let them bond and spend some time in their new space.

Make sure they are always with someone when in their new outdoor space and on a lead if possible. Stay with your dog for the first few times they are out until they gain confidence and feel secure.

Notification

Update your dog’s identification tag and microchip, if they have one, with your new address. Let your vet know that you are moving so that your dog’s health reminders continue to reach you at your new address.

If you are moving to a new location and need a referral, your vet is an excellent resource. You may also find an online directory of vets helpful such as Vetweb.net or Mypet.com.

Before you move, check the law in your new area to see if you need a new license for your dog. Find out what the leash laws are or if there are any breed bans in your new place.

Make sure you have a current photo of your dog in case the worst happens and he or she gets lost.

Explore New Remedies

If you do a search online for ways to calm your dog, you may be overwhelmed by the information you get.

There are methods of all kinds and even prescription drugs. Assuming your dog has proper training, natural remedies that are now on the market can be a blessing for moving day.

There are safe, natural diet supplements on the market that can help ease the stress and anxiety that some pets experience with a move. CBD hemp oil extract supplements are natural and easy to give to your dog before moving day even happens.

CBD hemp oil extract has been proven by owner testimonial to be a safe, effective remedy for anxiety and stress in dogs. An extraction of the cannabis plant, CBD hemp oil contains no THC, which is the part of the plant that gets people “high”. THC is harmful to dogs, so be sure the supplement you choose is made only for dogs and contains no THC.

Safe and legal, CBD hemp oil extract is easy to give your dog with a drop or two on his tongue or on his food. It is tasteless and contains coconut oil as the carrier in addition to the effective hemp oil extract itself.

Unlike prescription drugs, CBD hemp oil extract has no known side effects. It is perfect to give your dog for weeks before a move to prevent stress and fear from happening.

How does CBD hemp oil work on anxiety?

For a full explanation on CBD hemp oil and how effective it is on dog anxiety, download this free eBook. In this eBook, you will learn about how CBD hemp oil works to make the signals sent by brain cells in your dog normal again.

As an example, imagine the brain and nerve cells as a telephone system. Without CBD hemp oil extract, because of fear and stress, your dog’s telephone system may sound like two cans and a string!

By normalizing this communication and calming your dog with CBD hemp oil extract, they can have a more normal, easy move to their new home.

You’ll find more information on CBD hemp oil extract in the eBook, which will amaze you and open new possibilities for keeping your dog calm and happy.

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