Tips for Moving Your Pet

A sense of home can be felt in the soft, cotton of a blanket and even in the cozy embrace of a teddy bear. So even though you might have to move to a new home, there can still be a sense of the old, familiar home. Incorporating items like this into your move can help alleviate some of the stress that your pet will experience during the transition. Unfortunately, you cannot verbally explain to your pet what is going on, but you can try to explain it to them by using memorable scents and providing them with food, water, shelter and, of course, love.

When it comes to cats, it can be challenging to make an outdoor cat an indoor cat. The difficult part is keeping them indoors, because they will sneak and try to find a way to return to the outdoors. However, you can try to teach your cat to walk on a harness until it becomes familiar with the new neighborhood. If it’s too dangerous to let your cat roam free in your new neighborhood, consider allowing your cat to venture out onto the balcony or enjoy the view and fresh air from the window. Keep food and water or treats on the balcony to encourage the cat to stay put. Netting or a fence can prevent the cat from jumping off of the balcony. Leaping from high places can result in severe injury and even death, which is why it’s also important to double-check the strength of the screens in your windows and doors.

Relocating dogs can be somewhat easier if you crate trained them while they were young. Their crate is like a mobile home, because they can find security and safety in it when they are scared or uncertain. If your dog isn’t crate trained, you can provide it with towels or bedding that has his or her scent. To prevent bathroom problems, have your dog do its business on a similar spot to the one he or she went on while at home. For instance, maybe your dog prefers grass or a pee pad.

Additional Tips

Whether you are moving because of a new job, foreclosure, change of scenery, following a friend or family member, etc., do it step by step so that your pet can get acquainted with the new scenery.

1. Introduce your pet to the new home a few times prior to the actual move. This provides your pet with a preview and allows him or her to investigate the different surroundings.

2. Use an old towel or shirt and rub it on your animal to capture its scent then you can rub your pet’s scent onto the new carpet, bedding, furniture, etc. It will make your pet feel more comfortable. This helps turn the unknown into the known.

3. Keep some of the old litter in the litter box or keep a used pee pad to prevent your pet from marking. This will also make it clear to them where they are supposed to go to the bathroom.

4. Continue with your regular habits. For example, maintain the same sleeping arrangements as well as the same feeding, exercising and grooming schedules.

It may take some time but eventually your pet will get comfortable again. This is a rough time for your pet, so be supportive by cuddling, playing and spending quality time with your animal during this transition.

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