Pets, especially cats and dogs, are creatures of habit. They can get upset by a sudden change in the environment. So, moving to a new home is as stressful for them as it is for their humans. But there are some ways that can help make the transition easier for these beloved pets.
Visit your vet
If you’re moving out of the area, make sure to inform your vet about it so you can take note of any prescription medication that your pet needs. Also, ask if they know any vet in your new neighbourhood that they can recommend.
Almost every state has laws and regulations for pet owners, so it is important to do some research. To transport pets, you will be required to have an interstate health certificate. Be sure to obtain one from your vet.
Prepare your pets
Whether the trip is short or long distance, it is best that the pets are placed in a carrier during the trip. Get your pets used to a pet carrier by introducing to them the idea slowly. Have it around the living area a couple of days before your planned move. Place a blanket, toys or treats inside and leave the door open. This will give them a positive experience being inside the carrier.
Also, try carrying your pets around your house while they are inside the crate and take a short drive.
Keep your pets away from the action
If you are hiring a removalist, it can be stressful for your pets to have unfamiliar people going in and out of your house during the moving day. They might scape while the removalists are trying to load your things to the truck. It is best that you keep your pets away from the action. Try placing them in a quiet room with closed doors. Be sure to provide them with food and water - and a litter box if your pet is a cat. You can also assign someone in the family to watch over your pet on the actual moving day. Do the same process in your new place upon arriving and unpacking your things.
Settling in the new home
It can be tempting to let your pet loose after arriving at your new home. However, the unfamiliar place can be overwhelming to your pets. Allow them to get accustomed first before letting them loose. Keep your pets confined safely inside the house until they realize that it is their new home.
Once the removalists have left, give your dog a tour to his/her new home. Walk the dog with a leash to keep them safe and secure by your side. Try to maintain the same routine as you have before in your old place. Give your dog enough attention during the adjustment period. This will help the dog settle in easier.
If they could choose, cats would prefer to stay in the place they’re comfortable in. Bringing them to a new home can be scary for them. They may try to escape for them to find a place that is familiar to them. Provide a safe room for the cat that is quiet and safe while s/he gets accustomed to the new smell and sound of your new home. Make sure that the door, windows, and ceiling are secure to avoid them from wandering off. Without familiar sights, cats like to hide to feel safe. Place a cardboard box that will serve as their hiding place. Equip the safe room with food, water scratching post, and litter box. Once the cat feels comfortable and safe, s/he can start to explore the rest of the house.
Other smaller pets
Keep your bird in a place where they will be undisturbed until they become accustomed to their new surroundings. For fishes, the water source may be of different quality. Test the water quality and make sure that the chlorine level is zero and the pH level should be the same as the one they are used to. Other small pets may have few or no adjustment problems.
Whether you’re doing a self-move or hire a professional removalist, proper planning and preparedness can ease yours and your pets’ stress. Over time, your pet will get used to its new surroundings and find your new home as lovable as the old one.