I had all the good intentions in the world this week, then I realized I had made it to Thursday and not completed half of said intentions. As a consequence of that, I missed the Project 52 Pet Photography blog cut off.
So, I thought I would take this opportunity to delve a little further into what its like trying to move with a 12 year old arthritic hound dog in tow.
Sapphires age was a big factor in the decision making process, so much so I very nearly decided to stay where I was. After Saffy's recent check up at the vet I got some pretty solid advice and in this case- that, in the end, was what played around in my head and helped make the decision for me.
And that advice was, Sapphires in fantastic health for her age, so much so its surprised even her vet. He said based on that- you need to get out and start doing things for you. Don't sit back and wait... she may be around for another year yet! (Interestingly- that is the position I found myself in, sitting, waiting)
Elderly dogs are very very much creatures of habit, they like to have their familiar things around them and in the places where those familiar things should be! Based on this I knew Sapphire was really going to struggle with seeing her life packed into boxes.
To alleviate this stress, and keep her immersed in the entire process, I gave Sapphire a job! And a very important job it is!
Chief Box Inspector!
It is Sapphires job to quality control everything going in boxes, it all passes the sniff and nudge test, and when she has approved, a small reward is given. As a result of this, Sapphire isn't scared of the boxes, she isn't fretting about why her things are being packed, she simply stands at the boxes... wiggling her tail and waiting for her job to commence. How does she know? The command "where" and my finger pointing to the box gets the ball rolling.
What she has struggled with to date, is all the moving around I am doing. She has not been resting as much as she normally would and as a result she was completely lame on one front leg Sunday night.
I'm not going to lie- its hard watching them hurt. So it is now MY job to make sure she doesn't overdo it again. We are into our last weekend at the current place now and I hope that Sapphire enjoys the change in scenery. Whats the plan for moving day? I've got a snuffle rug on the way for her to keep her brain occupied, she will have to spend some time in her crate so I can enforce a rest period for her, and one of my family members will be with her at the new place so she isn't all on her own! The day before when I collect the keys I will be taking her with me so its not unfamiliar territory- I will also be leaving some of my belongings there overnight so when we return the next day it will smell familiar (well- that's the theory I'm working on)
To some, this may all be overkill- shes "just a dog" however- it is my responsibility as her owner to ensure she is happy and living as stress free a life as possible.
Has anyone else done anything to help make the moving process easier for their furkids? Let me know in the comments! See you on the flip side!