Keeping Your Dog Safe and Secure: The Ultimate Guide for New Homeowners
As the old saying goes, “May I become the kind of person that my dog thinks I already am.” When you consider the unconditional love and adoration our dogs provide, we owe it to them to create a safe environment for them. This may feel daunting when moving to a new home, but by following these time-tested tips, you’ll create the ultimate in safety and security, and you’ll ease the transition to your new home, too.
Before Moving Day
● Locate the nearest 24-hour emergency vet clinic to your new home. You can choose a new veterinarian after you move, but for now, add the phone number and address to your phone. Also, find out if there are any region-specific vaccines your dog might need in his new stomping grounds.
● Update your dog’s ID tag with your new address and the registry you use if your dog is microchipped.
● If you’re buying a new house or renovating a fixer-upper, talk with the construction company or your realtor about avoiding any materials that could be toxic to your dog.
On Moving Day
● Dogs love familiarity, so it can be stressful for your dog when nothing looks, sounds, or smells familiar. As much as you may want to have everything spic and span in your new home, it’s recommended you hold off washing your dog’s belongings until after the move.
● When it comes to his bed, toys, bowls, etc., pack all of them in a box or bag that you keep with you. Let that be the first box you unpack. If possible, place these items in the same places they were in your old house; i.e., put his bed in your bedroom if that’s where it was in your old house.
● Give your dog a new treat or toy at your new home so he associates the new place with fun.
After the Move
● While unpacking your things, watch for any household items that can be dangerous for your dog.
● Stick to your previous feeding and walking schedules as much as possible.
● If you’re unable to stay home the first few days following a move, consider arranging for someone to visit each day to ease your dog’s anxiety and to burn off some energy.
● The happier and more occupied your dog is, the less apt he is to be in harm’s way. Make sure he’s getting lots of attention and exercise. Keep him busy with fun activities and perhaps food-dispensing toys. Find nearby dog-friendly establishments and parks, and take him for walks in your new neighborhood. Be sure to introduce your dog to your new neighbors. Their familiarity with him may help if he ever gets lost.
● Dog-proofing your home and yard is a must. Do not allow him to be unaccompanied in your yard until you have:
1. Checked to see if there are any plants that are poisonous to dogs.
2. Made sure the previous owner didn’t use cocoa mulch.
3. Checked the perimeter of the yard for any gaps where your dog could get out or other creatures could get in.
● When it comes to your dog’s safety, nothing is more critical than having a good fence. Over 1.2 million dogs in the U.S. are killed on the roads each year. The average cost to install or build a fence is $2,670, and considering the safety it provides, it’s the best investment you can make for your dog’s safety.
● Never leave your dog in the yard when you’re not home. Even when you are home, you’ll want to keep an eye on him.
● Also keep an eye on your dog’s health and sense of well-being after a move. Symptoms of stress to watch for are diarrhea, vomiting, loss of appetite or lethargy. If these symptoms continue, you’ll want to take him to your vet to make sure nothing else is going on.
Try your best to stay calm, reinforce positive behavior and take time to have fun together. As you do this and follow the above tips, you and your dog will soon feel right at home.
Article by Cindy Aldridge at Ourdogfriends.org
Photo via Pixabay - https://pixabay.com/en/irish-setter-love-for-animals-stroke-1342252/
If you’re buying a new house or renovating a fixer-upper, - http://www.dogster.com/lifestyle/tips-for-dog-safety-during-home-renovations
Give your dog a new treat or toy at your new home - https://www.petco.com/shop/PetcoContentDisplayView?storeId=10151&catalogId=10051&langId=-1&path=/content/petco/PetcoStore/en_US/pet-services/resource-center/caresheets/moving-your-dog-to-a-new-home.html
if there are any plants that are poisonous to dogs. - https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control/toxic-and-non-toxic-plants
owner didn’t use cocoa mulch. - https://animalwellnessmagazine.com/dangers-cocoa-mulch/
The average cost to install or build a fence - https://www.homeadvisor.com/cost/fencing/install-a-fence/