A Guide for Moving with Furry Family Members
By Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group
Preparing for your move
The first step is to get all their medical records. This shouldn't be hard because most vets will just transfer their records electronically.
It is also important to refill any medications that they take and bring the meds along on the trip with them!
If you are driving cross country or even just across town, it may help to bring some type of bedding for your pet like blankets or towels that can serve as makeshift beds in the car. They may feel more comfortable sleeping on something soft than sitting on plastic or metal from a carrier or kennel for an extended period.
Packing the essentials
You can't move with your pets without packing the essentials, which includes everything from their food to their favorite toy. The best thing you can do is pack these items in a box by themselves so that they are easy to find when you need them. When it comes to food, place enough for at least two weeks per pet into a container or box that has an airtight seal on it.
Next, make sure your pets always have toys and treats on hand. You should also include any medications or grooming supplies for any special needs your pet might have. And don't forget about leashes, collars, and other safety equipment!
Choosing the right type of carrier
When moving with your pets, you need to make sure you can get them from one home to the other safely. One of the best ways to do this is by using a carrier. There are many different types of carriers out there, so you will have to take some time to figure out which type is the best for your pet.
Whatever type of carrier you choose, make sure it is large enough for your pet; otherwise, they could feel cramped during their trip!
Ensuring safety and comfort
Pets can sense tension and stress and they also realize when things are changing, even if they can't tell you. This means they're more likely to try to bolt outside when a door is open. They may be inclined to nip at people – both familiar and strangers – or to hide in new places.
It's a good idea to offer a safe space for your pet to go when they're feeling overwhelmed. And when you'll be busy and unable to keep an eye on them, such as during packing or when the moving company is loading or unloading the truck, you may want to put them in an empty bedroom or bathroom with the door closed to ensure they don't escape.
On moving day, swap out the tags on their collar with new ones that list your new address and, if applicable, new phone number. This ensures that if your pet escapes or is otherwise lost during the move, they'll be able to find their way back to you. You should also update their microchip around this time with the new information.
Unique challenges when moving with pets
Moving with pets has unique challenges that you don't have to worry about when moving without them. For instance, your animal is probably not going to be too excited about the idea of the moving company team coming into the house and messing up his favorite spots with boxes. But it's also important to know what you can do to make sure your pet is comfortable and safe during the move. Luckily, there are some simple steps you can take to make sure they are happy during the transition.
First, try saving their area for last when packing. Try to keep the upheaval out of their bedding, eating, and bathroom areas as much as you can. This gives them safe spaces to retreat to.
Put pets in an empty room and close the door both while moving out of your current home and into your new home. You may need to do this every time you go in and out for a while as your pet adjusts to their new home.
Next, if you're moving to a new house in a nearby area, try taking your dog for walks or to a dog park in the new area so they can start getting familiar with the area. If you have a cat, try bringing something from the new house to your current home so the cat can sniff it and get used to the smell.
Moving disrupts their routine and life in general, so it's important they have plenty of time to become reacquainted with their new environment. Find ways to introduce them into their new home before you officially move in together. Take them around the house on a leash or let them explore outside on a long line while supervised.
Moving with pets can be a bit more difficult than moving alone. Follow this guide and you'll be fully prepared.
Request a free quote