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Tranquility 8

3 Helpful Tips for Downsizing with Pets

It’s quite common for the main concern surrounding downsizing to be the comfort and livability of a right-sized home with pets. What if my dog is too loud and my neighbors can hear her barking? I wonder if my cat will stay on the screened in porch or if he’ll try to escape every time the door opens? The list of concerns can go on and it’s worth taking some time to explore solutions. With a little preparation and management of expectations, you can help your furry family members thrive in your new environment as well as you do. Here are a few tips to help with the transition.

Join Your Pet Outdoors

The most difficult but perhaps most important tip to help your dog or cat adjust to living in a cottage community is to get them used to being with you every time they are outdoors. A month or so before you are set to move, join them in your yard every time you let them out. Make it active playtime by throwing a ball or stick or heading out for a leashed walk. That way they can become used to having supervision when outside as well as adjust to your schedule.

Don’t make this transition too quickly! Especially if you’ve lived with an independent pet for a long time. Try leaving them indoors when you make a quick run to the store or even during the night while you sleep. Continue adding to this time so that your pet is spending no unsupervised time outside.

Surprisingly this transition is sometimes easier for dogs than cats. Especially if your cat is used to roaming for hours during the day. If your outdoor cat is having a hard time transitioning to an indoor pet, try placing their bed in the sun or purchasing them a heated mat. What cat can resist a warm, snuggly place to nap?

Take More Walks

If your best friend is used to having a large yard to play in, take them out for longer and more frequent walks during the transition time. Bonus, this is good for you too! You can also experiment with leashed walking to a dog park or off-leash play area, and leashed walking home. This way your pet will learn to burn off energy and when the time is right! Each of our three communities – The Village, The Hamlet, and Lakeshore – all feature Dog Parks that allow your pet fun and freedom where water bowls, waste receptacles, and a pet wash stations are provided for your convenience. The parks are always open for your convenience and their recreation!

Feed Your Pet Inside

If your furry family members are used to eating outside, it is essential to change that routine before the move. Start by putting their food and water dishes inside and giving only behavior cue treats outside. (Try to move bones and other chew treats inside.) Develop a habit by feeding in the same room you’re likely to use in your new cottage home, such as the kitchen or bathroom.

At Simple Life we love pets! That is why we include dog parks in our communities and poop stations at every intersection. We do require that each pet has a full vaccination record, rabies shots, and we require an adorable photo to be submitted with your North Carolina Pet Approval Form or Florida Pet Approval Form. View our North Carolina Pet Policy, our Florida Pet Policy for a complete overview of our regulations.

We invite you to visit Simple Life to meet some of our happy residents both human and animal! Call (904) 404-5114 or chat with us live online. You are also encouraged to LIKE us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram, or follow us on Houzz for more tips and tricks for your right-sized lifestyle.