Moving house can be a stressful time, and no-one notices it more than our furry family members. We’ve come up with a pet-friendly moving plan to ensure your cat, dog, bird or goldfish is feeling at home in no time.
Did you know that over 63% of Australian homes house pets? Of these 63% , 40% are dog owners and 26% are cat owners, so it’s fair to say that pets are as much of our families as people are. As cats and dogs are highly sensitive creatures, it’s important to remember that they will pick up on your anxiety too. What better way to reduce your own stress and ensure your moving day goes smoothly than with a sure-fire moving plan in place?
Some tips for a stress-free pet move
- The first thing to do is to call your local vet and set up an appointment to get any final checks, vaccinations, medicine and a vet referral for your new location. Make sure you get copies of all your prescriptions and any certificates required for air travel if you’re moving interstate or overseas.
- It’s a good idea to contact your local council to register your pets in the area. Check any council rules for pets and check out the local beaches and parks for restrictions.
- Before moving house with cats and dogs, make sure you check out your new home for pet-friendliness. Check that there is ample space to get some exercise, with a fenced backyard, courtyard or a nearby local park.
- Go to your local pet store and talk to them about the best pet carrier for safe travel. To help with a comfortable transition, be sure to pack familiar items such as blankets and toys.
Your pet moving checklist
- Veterinary certificates and records and prescriptions
- Harnesses or leashes (for both cats and dogs)
- Pet beds (pillows, towels or other crate liners)
- Bags and scoops for dogs
- Litter box for cats
- Cage covers for rodents and birds
- Paper towels for messes
- Supplies for your first day at your new home
- Your usual pet food and plenty of water from the home you’re leaving (changing the water source can be disorienting and upset their stomachs)
- Food and water bowls, a can opener and re-sealable lids
- Toys, chew bones and treats
On moving day
One tip for moving house with your pet is to try to arrange to have your pet looked after until you’ve unpacked yourself. It will free you up to unpack quickly and goes a long way to alleviate stress for both you and your favourite family member. If that’s not possible, be sure to keep to your normal routine on moving day. Pets pick up on change, so sticking to your usual routine, using the same toys, blankets and even packing their favourite treat is a great way to ease them into the move.
To avoid a run-away cat or dog, keep your pet in their travelling crate until you can arrange a space for them in your new home.
Did you know it’s quite normal for stressed pets to refuse food and water and is usually the first tell-tale sign that your cat or dog is feeling anxious?
If you do notice your pet is a bit anxious, just monitor their intake for the first day. If they continue to refuse food, it’s best to call your local vet.
To help your pets settle in, try to make everything seem familiar, new smells and sounds can create anxiety, so it’s best that you don’t wash your pets bedding until a few weeks after you’ve moved.
Remember to keep your furry friends on leashes until they get comfortable with their new surroundings. This can usually take a few days for dogs and up to a week for cats. To quicken up familiarisation, it’s a great idea to take your pets for long walks in the area.
With a little bit of TLC, a great plan and a bit of prepping your furry friends will have an easy transition to your new digs!