5 helpful tips on how to pack and move your dog

Moving is one of the top 10 most stressful events in a person’s life- we can all agree on this fact. Wherever we go, man’s/woman’s best friend is sure to follow and is hopefully not lost in the moving process. All animals are creatures of habit and become very nervous when they’re relocated to a new and different environment. When you start to move, they start to freak out.  At Rent A Green Box, we have seen our share of moving related pet issues: sad pets, missing pets and really pissed off pets. With over 80,000 moves completed in the last five years, we’re constantly asked the same question “How do I safely move my dog?”  We’re happy to share with you these free dog friendly packing and moving tips, for a happy pup! If your looking to move your cat, we have a special tips article on “how to pack and move your cat”.


1.) Moving Prep: Have your veterinarian give you a referral to a new vet near your new residence.  This can often eliminate file/record transferal fees.  Stock up on their prescription medications until you do find a new veterinarian. Keep your copies of your pet’s medical records with you in a box with first aid materials for the drive/flight.  This box should travel with you and your dog, not buried under boxes. It should also include food and water for travel and upon arrival. Hydrated pets are happy pets on long car rides/plane flights.  

However if you’re moving to a nearby residence, walk your dog as much as possible around his/her new address prior to moving.  As soon as you know your new contact information, get updated pet ID tags so he/she can wear both a week before and after moving day. If lost people can return him two the two locations owners can be found. 

Invest in a secure and spacious pet carrier and get your pet accustomed to the crate ahead of time.  Most dogs can even be crated early to a family friend or kennel to remove them from the chaos of moving. If that is not an option, throughout the move avoid encouraging nervous behaviors by over attention or babying the dog. Instead have the dog or cat participate in positive actions like going on walks and other normal activities.  To keep to normalcy is the most important theme so also avoid washing blankets and toys a week before and after to keep the scent they associate with home.

2.) Moving Day: On the day of the move, if not already exported, decide where the dog will reside during loading. Placing them in an unlocked crate in a quiet room is best.  Give 

them food, water, and a toy. Use a sign on the outside of the door reminding movers not to accidentally let your dog escape.  Injury can done to himself/herself or others if loose on a day full of transporting heavy objects.  To give your dog the quickest and easiest travel your dog should be the last thing on the truck at the old residence and the first thing off the truck at the new residence. 


3.) Travel by Car: If traveling by car crates are the best mode of carrying.  If your dog doesn’t like riding in cars, veterinarians may offer the option of tranquilizers or sedatives to reduce the stress of travel.  Never leave your dog alone in a parked vehicle on a warm day due to health complications as well as pet theft.  When in transit allow for rest stops every hour and a half for potty, stretch, and water breaks.

4.)Traveling by Air: Traveling by air takes pre-planning and is time consuming and stressful to you and your pets, so avoid if possible.  If you have a small dog, for a small fee you can carry on dogs with you, which will be well worth the expense.  Call the airline well in advance of your flight to get details about cabin/cargo limits, immunization requirements, and carrier standards.


5.) Post Move: After the move your dog will be extremely curious so allow him to navigate around the space and around the stacked belongings. As soon as you can do so make sure to set out his old bed, carrier, bowls and toys to evoke a sense of familiarity.  Do this first before unpacking to make him/her more relaxed so that you can be relaxed too while proceeding with your own settling in. 

It may seem like an excess amount of precautions, but by abiding some of these tips, you and your pup can relax and for smooth move. Rent A Green Box wishes you and your pup and safe and happy move!

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