The Dogs Take On Downsizing

The Dogs Take On Downsizing

There have been lots of challenges and adjustments in the new apartment. For me, I’m still struggling with the change of being located in the center of cool culture to now living in a sea of toll roads and Chili’s restaurants.

PS – I do not like Chili’s.

Anyway, the dogs are doing well overall. I figured Eliot would adapt pretty quickly because even though he has a tendency to bite faces, he’s moved with me 7 times and is the best house trained dog ever. Eliot gets a little manic when I first come home and doesn’t understand why I won’t let him squeak his favorite squeaky toy at 11pm, but otherwise is doing really well with apartment life. It doesn’t hurt that he’s almost 10 years old and probably just sleeps most of the time anyway.


I wasn’t sure how Pascale would take the move. She’s only known one house, and she was house trained on a dog door. House training her took about two days with only 1-2 accidents before she happily figured out to go outside, but even as a full grown dog she has been known to have an accident in a house without a dog door. She will just look around like, “How out?” and then go find a corner to poop in. Lovely.

However, she must have grown up a lot because she’s been accident free so far. Another concern with Pascale is her tendency to bark defensively. She’s pretty protective, and even before Tim died she would amp up the volume when he was out of town and it was just me and the dogs in the house. Living alone now, I don’t really mind that there’s a big, scary sounding dog barking to protect me… but it’s not great in an apartment. While she has been barking, it’s been pretty reasonable and no complaints so far.

BT is the biggest problem.

For the first week, she was very disoriented and stressed. Remember, she can’t see or hear so getting around the new place was troubling her. Just when I started to really worry about it and consider putting her on doggy Prozac or something, she began to do a lot better. She knows the layout now, and has learned to follow me in from the little yard so I don’t have to pick her up every time she needs to go in or out. It’s not perfect, but it’s much better.


At our old house, BT and Pascale used to play several times a day very happily. They don’t do that as much here. I actually think it’s more Pascale’s doing than BT’s. Pascale seems to prefer to play with Eliot or her toys than the crazy old BT right now. Part of that may be due to me telling them to be quiet past 10pm, but I’m not sure. I hope they play more in the future, because it was one of those things that really let me know that BT still had a good quality of life.

As you can see from the below video, the playing hasn’t stopped entirely!

Probably the biggest challenge with BT is accidents. She stays in the bathroom during the day and at night, but has had a harder time ‘holding it’ than I feel like she should. I don’t know if this is an issue related to her age or due to the fact that she has always been an unhygienic dog who has lots of accidents. BT was a puppy mill breeder dog, and was rescued from a small pen very overrun with Boston Terriers and covered in waste. She has no concept of “keeping my bed clean” like most dogs have.

All in all, the fur babies are doing pretty well. I think part of me worrying about them is that I’m just so used to having to worry about someone other than myself. In recent times that worry has been focused at Tim, but now that he’s gone I’m accepting he’s at peace… which leaves no where for the worry to go. Guess I need to learn to relax, but until then I’ll be trying to figure out how to train BT on pee pads for her accidents.

18 thoughts on “The Dogs Take On Downsizing

  1. I was recently privy to a conversation between a woman with an older dog who is becoming incontinent and a vet. The vet said there was something that could be done medically for that. I dunno what that is. But, maybe call the vet for some advice?

    I’m so glad to hear the puppies are overall settling in well! Dogs are so happy to just be where we are, and I love that about them.

  2. It definitely takes the critters a while to acclimate, but they all seem to be doing really well. Sorry about the accidents with BT… hopefully in time she’ll figure it out and the pee pads will help!

  3. I had a lab that was very housebroken who started having accidents. It was 10 years ago so I can’t remember the details but basically it had something to do with spayed females and their bladders. Medication helped a lot!

  4. My aunt’s BT is also very messy. Not sure if it is the breed or not. She bought him this interesting grass pad that imitates the outdoors and he seems to like going on that. Wouldn’t be my first choice though.

  5. I’ve found that just being in a new place can result in more potty accidents with the pups. But they do normally acclimate. My rescue still occasionally poops in the house. If I’m home, he’s learned to whine at the door to go out. But if I’m not there, he doesn’t think he should have to wait I guess. Pia has frequent UTI’s and when she’s in the midst of one and I haven’t realized it yet, we get pp accidents. It happens. They do make doggy diapers if it becomes a real problem. I think they call them belly bands or something like that.

  6. Great video!! =) Glad overall they’re adjusting okay without super major issues. Its wonderful to have such beautiful fur-children to take care of and worry over.

  7. I’m really glad the dogs are adjusting pretty well. It’s always harder for older dogs to change, I think — Especially those with sight or hearing impairments. But BT looks pretty happy playing with Pascale 😀 😀

  8. Sounds like the dogs have been adjusting well all things considered. Stella has always been a horrible one about going to the bathroom inside. She mostly goes on a pad now but will still spitefully go in the house. That’s what it seems like anyway. Hope they continue to settle more!

  9. I’m glad they are adjusting to the new place. It looks really nice! We’ve moved many times with our cats and it’s always tough for a while. It helps once we get our stuff unpacked and they see “their” things, though they won’t be at complete ease until they’ve inspected every single nook and cranny. We use this calming pheromone spray from Drs Foster & Smith (Petsmart and stuff has it too I think) and it’s helped our cats in stressful transitional times, not sure if they have a dog version or not.

  10. Moving is so hard on dogs. I wish I could just explain it to them! Sounds like they’re settling in all things considered. I imagine going from a house with a yard and dog door to an apartment with neighbors on all sides is probably the hardest.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.