If you are like us, your pet is a member of your family. However, it is harder to explain to a pet than a child that the family is moving to a new home. Moving with a pet can be stressful—not just for you, but also for your animal. Green Valley Moving is here to help you reduce your pet’s worry during your move, as well as ensure the safety of your four-legged family during the journey.
This goes without saying, but the easiest way to not fret your pet is to have it at another location (such as a friend’s house or kennel) when the moving company comes for packing or pick-up. Strangers being in your home and disturbing your belongings can be a huge trigger for animals, especially dogs. A protective pet can also be a safety hazard for your movers.
If you are packing yourself, this can also be surprisingly stressful for pet (especially if it has moved before). As you pack, reassure your pet and take small breaks to play with toys, feed snacks, and go for walks or exercise. 1-on-1 attention can be comforting for your four-legged family and reduce the worry that “mom/dad is leaving me.”
Some animals are naturally more anxious, and talking to a veterinarian about medicinal help may be a good idea. Some pets lose interest in food and water when stressed, so being proactive can be a matter of health or sickness for your pet.
Don’t forget to pack an overnight bag for your pet like you would for yourself. Include a water bowl, food, favorite toys, a blanket, poo bags or kitty litter, and grooming supplies to give your pet a sense of familiarity during the move and unpacking days.
During the Move
Of course, you will want to transport your pet in your own vehicle. That way, it will be familiar with the vehicle and will be with you. We recommend moving cats in carriers, as well as other small pets. Talk to your veterinarian about the best size and type of carrier for your pet. Carriers can be secured with seatbelts and provide a “nest” for your pet as it changes environments. If you have a medium-sized or large dog, it will be more comfortable having a seat of its own. Seatbelt attachments are available for various dog harnesses.
If going long distance, take regular potty breaks with your pet and offer it snacks and water. This is a matter of health, and also an easy way to reduce anxiety with routine.
As you begin unpacking, set-up as many familiar objects as possible before setting your small pet loose. Smells and sights from home are wonderful tools for grounding your pet in its new house.
Before you start a long-distance move, check with your veterinarian about necessary paperwork and records for your new state/county/city. Registrations and tags for certain vaccinations can be a legal matter in some places, so protect yourself and your pet by having the proper records.
It is also a good idea to know a veterinarian in your new neighborhood. Your pet may get sick while travelling or need new paperwork upon arrival. Check with your established veterinarian for a recommendation, or find options online.
Once you are settled-in, contact your new county or city and apply for new tags, etc. Be sure to also update your pet’s microchip information with your new address and other contact information!