The process of moving is not only stressful for people, they are stressful for the pets too. With proper planning and steps, the transition can be made smooth for everyone. As everything gets packed up, the house pets may go through a sense of distress in the process. But the adaptation to the transition and the level of distress they may go through vary depending on the type of pet and their individual nature. Dogs may be much more adaptable comparative to the cats. Cats love their routine and feel safe staying in their familiar space.
Planning before the move
It may be a good idea to start planning for the move beforehand so that the pets get used to the change and avoid being unsettled or clingy. The first step while planning a move may be making the pet used to the pet carrier. You may start introducing the pet carrier by putting the blanket, favorite toys or treats inside and leave the door open so that the pets feel positive.
The next step to make the pets comfortable are by taking the pets for car rides. You may increase the time period gradually to make the pets familiar and comfortable with the travel. By this way, the get used to the travel sights and sounds and it may reduce the pet's anxiety during the move. If the neighborhood you are planning to move is nearby, you may take the dogs for walks near the neighborhood to make them familiarize with the neighborhood scents before the actual move.
During the move
During the move, include the pets in the packing process by allowing them to sniff around freely. It may make them more comfortable rather than caging them and leaving them isolated in a cage or room during the process. It is important to get familiar with the rules and regulations of the State or Homeowners association or the landlord. One person in the family may be made responsible to take care of the needs of the pet to ensure they feel safe and comfortable. Making a visit to the vet may be necessary to ensure the pet's vaccinations are up to date.
Tips for moving with Pets
Unpack Pet's belongings
Unpack pet's belongings first to make them comfortable in their new environment. It makes the dogs settle faster if there are things that reminds them of the scent of their old home like unwashed items like dog's bedding or your old t-shirt.
Keep up the routine
Pets are very much used to the routine and helps them settle faster if they are given food or taken out for a walk at their usual time. Pets may act differently when they are in a new environment out of stress and anxiety, surrounding them with familiar things and keeping up the same routine may help ease them to adapt to their new environment.
Visit to the Vet
It may be important to have a visit with your vet before the move to obtain all the pet and vaccination records, collect medications, may also ask for a referral for a vet in the new neighborhood of the move.
It is important to update new address and contact details on the Pet's tag or microchip after moving to your new home. Birds can be identified by their leg bands.
Moving with fishes
It is usually not advisable to transfer the fishes in their tanks during the move. If the fishes are small or of short distance move, they may be tied in a small plastic bag with a tie. If the fishes are big, then they may be transferred in a container with a lid or Styrofoam cooler and may use a bucket for the aquarium plants. Always make sure to use the aquarium water and avoid using fresh water as the fishes might feel harder to adapt on the fresh water. Use only the top portion of the aquarium water as the bottom portion might contain contaminants. You may also open the container few times during the move to refresh the air in the container.
Transporting by air
The rules and regulations and the pet policies differ from one airline to other and they also differ based on the type of pet, size and weight of the pet. So, it's important to research the airline that best suit for your need, price and policy. The rules and regulations must be read carefully to better prep for the smooth transportation of the pet.
Moving with Guinea Pigs
It is advisable to keep a maximum of two Guinea pigs per carrier during the move. The guinea pigs need ample space, ventilation, proper bedding during the move. If you plan to move them by car, make sure to offer them water few times during the move. The vegetables may also provide them with needed hydration. You may need to maintain the temperature inside the car that is comfortable to the guinea pigs as they are sensitive to the temperature fluctuations. You may need to look out for loud squealing or guinea pigs running wildly. You may calm them by petting or talking to them.
Moving with Birds
You may transport the birds in a small cage or carrier, but its very important to make the birds get used to the carrier. You may need to maintain the temperature inside the car that is comfortable to the birds, as they are sensitive to the temperature fluctuations. You may need to carry a good quality cooler to carry fruits and vegetables during the move. Birds are usually secured in the backseat with seat belts and may use a glare guard to protect them from the sun.
After the move
Before letting the cats inside your new home, inspect the surroundings carefully to make sure there aren't any door or windows open, there aren't ant crawl space open where the cats can go out of your reach. Cats usually feel very anxious when they are present in an environment that is not familiar to them. Cats may wish to stay in a dark quieter place until they get used to the new unfamiliar surrounding and sounds. They may be made comfortable by giving them a separate space with their bed, toys, food and water bowl. It may take sometime for them to get adjusted and become comfortable on the new environment.
Once you are in your new home, you may make the dogs walk on your new space and neighborhood to make them familiar and comfortable. Walking them on a leash inside your home may make them feel safe and secure. Typically, dogs need lot of space to exercise and roam around. You may plan to stay with your dog initially by working from home to make the pet comfortable, then train them little by little by being away from the home. This helps them and gives time for them to get adjusted to the new environment slowly.