6 Ways to Make Your Move Easier and Safer for Your Pet
It's that time of year! For Sale signs are popping up all around your neighborhood, and it's out with the old, and in with the new!
Perhaps you are also moving into a new place this year. Although starting fresh in a new place can be exciting, moving is a very stressful event. Some pet parents forget that moving is equally as stressful for their pet.
Moving days include guests, potential strangers, noise, and opportunities to escape. Therefore, I would like to discuss 6 ways to make your moving experience easier and safer for your pet.
1) Bring Out the Crate Early!
Since it is likely your pet will need to spend time in their crate, either for traveling in the car, or to keep them from escaping, it is important that they are familiar with their crate.
This is especially true for cats. Cats typically associate their crate with a trip to the veterinarian, which doesn’t bring them positive feelings or memories. Therefore, several weeks before your move, bring their crate out into a central living location, and start associating it with positive things, like catnip, paper bags, or anything else your cat finds enjoyable.
If you have a dog, you can start giving them treats in their crate, or feeding them their meals in their crate, so that they are more comfortable when moving day actually arrives.
2) Provide Your Pet with a Secure Space
If your pet is going to be with you throughout moving day, keep in mind that moving things in and out of your home provides ample opportunity for your pet to escape. Additionally, you will be stressed and focused on moving your things, so you might not even realize they are gone right away.
If keeping your pet in a crate while moving is not an option, I highly recommend finding a secure place for them to stay and letting everyone who comes to the house know that your pet is not to be let out of that area. An example of this might be a guestroom, or a secure playpen.
3) Check Your New Fence
You may not have noticed any holes or gaps in your fence on your initial walkthrough, but I guarantee your stressed out pet will find them in two seconds. Before letting your pet investigate their new yard, be sure to go around and double-check the security of your fence. Pay close attention to chain-link fences that aren’t secure to the ground.
4) Keep an Eye on the Temperature
Most people move in the spring and summer months. When it is hot, it is not safe to leave your pet outside for extended periods of time, and it is especially dangerous to leave your pet in the car.
Therefore, you need to make sure they have access to plenty of shade and water when they are outside, and you may have to come up with a plan to move your pet into the house in the later hours of the day to avoid heatstroke.
5) Take Your Pet to a Pet Sitter
For those who are moving close to where they already live, this might be a great option. Especially if your pet has an established relationship with a pet sitter, whether they are your relative or professional.
Taking them to a pet sitter will allow your pet to skip out on the chaos of moving, and the stress of having lots of guests and maybe even strangers (cable guy, electrician, realtor, etc.) coming in and out of the house. Additionally, this will provide you with peace of mind, knowing your pet is safe and secure. This will also give you an opportunity to check your fence before your pet arrives at your new place.
6) Make Sure Your Contact Information is Up To Date On Your Pet’s ID Tag or Microchip
In the event that your pet does escape on moving day, please make sure that your current phone number is on their ID Tag, or associated with their microchip.
While working at the veterinary hospital, I came across a few pets whose microchip contact information was out of date, and this made it increasingly difficult for us to find their owner. Please make sure that people are able to contact you quickly if your pet does escape.
If you are moving this year, I hope that this article provides you with some insight in order to make your move less stressful for you and your pet.
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