Tips for Moving with Pets

September 16, 2023

Tips for Moving with Pets

There's no denying that pets have become an integral part of our families. In fact, did you know that 66% of American households own a pet? If you belong to this majority, then the very idea of moving homes might be filled with a mix of excitement and trepidation, especially considering the well-being of your furry friends. Here, we've compiled a guide on making the relocation process smoother for your beloved pets.

Introducing moving supplies to your animal companions

For many pets, unfamiliar surroundings can evoke anxiety. To ensure a stress-free transition, start introducing moving boxes early. A few weeks prior to the big day, lay out moving boxes, packing materials, and other supplies around your home. This allows pets, especially skittish dogs or curious cats, to gradually acquaint themselves with these new objects. Cat owners might find their feline friends using these boxes as a new scratching post or hideaway, turning an unfamiliar item into a source of entertainment. This process of familiarization can create a positive association with the packing checklist items and the forthcoming journey ahead.

Maintaining a regular routine is key

Pets, just like humans, find solace in routine. In the weeks leading up to moving day, pet owners should strive to stick to their animal friends' normal routines. Whether it's feeding at regular times, ensuring the kitty litter is changed, or sticking to your dog's walking schedule, maintaining these habits can help reduce stress in your pet. It’s essential, especially for small dogs or guinea pigs, to feel the consistency amidst the whirlwind of change.

Engage your pets in play

With the hustle and bustle of packing, many pets might feel left out or anxious. To ensure they remain engaged, keep their favorite toys, grooming tools, and familiar items accessible. For feathered friends, a new perch or toy can help them adjust. For cat owners, placing a familiar scratching post or litter box in the midst of moving boxes can provide a sense of familiar surroundings. This not only distracts them from the chaos but also establishes a positive association with the new space.

Schedule a visit with your veterinarian

Before embarking on the road trip or air travel with pets, a visit to the veterinarian is paramount. This is especially vital for long-distance moves or if you're considering using a pet transportation company. Ensure that you have a health certificate and updated health records for your pet. Discuss any concerns about car sickness or tips for moving with pets. If you're moving to a new neighborhood, ask your current vet for recommendations for a new vet or an emergency vet in the area. Making sure your pet is in good health and having all essential documents will pave the way for a smoother move.

Charting a pet-friendly journey

When the journey spans across states, overnight stays might be inevitable. Plan ahead by researching pet-friendly hotels or accommodations. After all, after a long day, both you and your pets deserve a comfortable place to rest. Your pets, like you, yearn for a warm, welcoming spot where they can unwind from the day's travels. Ensuring their comfort during these pit stops will make the entire relocation process much more pleasant for your beloved companions.

Keeping your pets secure and close

The excitement and unfamiliarity of moving day can be overwhelming for most pets. To reduce the risk of your pet wandering off or getting injured, secure them in a safe place, whether it's in a special carrier or a designated room. Regularly check in on them, offering words of reassurance and comfort. It’s these small gestures that help your animal companions feel loved and protected during such a significant change.

Crafting an emergency kit for your pets

Preparation is the key to a smooth move. Pack an emergency moving bag for your pet, equipped with essentials like food bowls, a few days’ worth of food, plastic bags, grooming tools, and their favorite toys. Also, keep their health records and any necessary medications handy. In the unexpected event of a detour or delay, this kit ensures your pet remains well-fed, comfortable, and stress-free.

Setting up a safe haven in your new abode

Before your pet arrives at their new home, take the time to pet-proof it. This involves checking for any potential hazards. Familiar items from your old house can help bridge the gap between the old and new surroundings. Your new home should not only be a space of safety but also one of love and warmth where your pets can embark on this new chapter with excitement.

How long will it take for my pet to adjust to our new home?

Adjustment periods vary for each pet, as they, like humans, have their unique personalities and temperaments. Some may find their stride in the new space within days, while others might need a few weeks or even longer. The unfamiliar surroundings, new smells, and altered routines can initially be overwhelming. However, with love, patience, and consistency, pet owners can ensure their animal companions find their footing in their new abode. It's essential to be patient, understanding their needs, and offering them the warmth and security they yearn for in this new chapter.

Tips On Moving With Different Types Of Pets

Moving With Fish

Fish are sensitive creatures, and moving can be a stressful experience for them. When preparing to transport fish, ensure the water in the transport container matches the temperature, pH, and salinity of their tank. Avoid feeding them a day before the move to reduce waste. Always handle their containers with care, minimizing jostling. Upon arrival, acclimatize the fish to the new tank's water gradually, ensuring a smooth transition.

Moving With Guinea Pigs, Hamsters, or Mice

Small rodents are delicate beings and can be susceptible to stress. When moving with these furry friends, transport them in small, secure carriers lined with soft bedding. Avoid drastic temperature changes and keep them away from loud noises. Upon arrival, set up their cages with familiar items from their old homes, like bedding, toys, or food bowls. Gradually introducing them to the new environment can help these tiny companions find solace amidst change.

Moving With Birds

Our feathered friends require special attention during moves. When transporting birds, use a secure travel cage that's well-ventilated. Covering the cage can help reduce stress. Always ensure they have access to water and their regular diet. Upon reaching the new home, place their cage in a quiet, familiar spot. With time, as the melody of their chirps fills the new space, they will start to feel more at home.

Moving With Reptiles

Reptiles, with their unique needs, require careful planning when moving. Use a sturdy, escape-proof container for transportation, and ensure it's adequately ventilated. Depending on the reptile species, maintaining an optimal temperature during the journey is crucial.

About Pacific Edge Real Estate

Pacific Edge Real Estate champions the heartfelt stories of their clients, blending over 60 years of San Francisco real estate expertise with an unwavering commitment to excellence and warm, personalized experiences. If you're looking to buy or sell a home or have any questions about the California real estate market, contact Pacific Edge Real Estate today.


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