It's been said that moving is one of the most stressful life experiences you can have. The stress can be compounded when you have pets in tow, particularly when moving long distances. If you are moving a long distance, particularly from one state to another, here are several important things you should do as a dog owner. 

Call ahead to the new city or county dog licensing office 

You'll need to call ahead to the dog licensing office where you are moving to. You can find the contact information by going to your new location's animal control office. In most areas, the office for dog licensing is located in the county courthouse or in the city government office building. Ask them what you will need to have in order to license your dog in that location. Also, be sure to ask if there is a time limit as to how long you will have to license your dog after you establish residency in the new area. This may be based on when you first move to the area or when you establish a permanent residence. If you fail to meet the timeline requirement, you could be faced with a fine. 

Get copies of health and shot records from the veterinarian 

Before moving, it's important to gather health and shot records from your dog's veterinarian. That way, the new veterinarian you take your dog to will be able to look at the previous records to determine the health condition of your dog as well as if it is up to date on vaccinations. Also, you will need to show proof of a current rabies shot when you go to the county office to get a dog license. Be sure to look at the dates of the vaccinations that are required for dog licensing, particularly the rabies vaccine. If the rabies licensing is due for renewal soon or has already expired, be sure to schedule an appointment for a rabies vaccination as soon as possible. 

Gather any other pertinent records 

If your dog is a service animal and/or has undergone training, gather supportive documentation. In some areas, rabies vaccinations and dog licensing are provided for at reduced rates for service animals and/or for dogs that have undergone behavioral training. If your dog was ever involved in an altercation that had resulted in a report or a charge from the animal control office, be sure to gather those documents as well, just in case they will be needed by the dog licensing office at your new location.