METCALF MOVING BLOG
Moving with Pets? Ease Their Stress With These Tips
If you think moving is stressful on humans — imagine the toll it takes on your pets. Pets tend to get anxious as soon as boxes and packing materials start to appear. Cats and dogs have that unique sense; they know something life-changing is about to happen.
Here are some tips to ease the moving stress for your beloved furry friends.
Pick a Home Your Pets Will Love Too
Whether you are searching for an apartment or a house, consider the space your pets will need. How much room do they require? Is a yard more desirable for your dog? Is the neighborhood a good fit and safe for your pets? These are all questions to consider before signing a contract.
Large dogs might not do well in a yard-free home due to potty schedules and their exercise needs. Most cats don’t mind space restrictions as long as there’s plenty of vertical climbing space to lounge and play on.
Packing With Pets in the Home
The packing process is when pet anxiety can really begin to kick in. So, try to start packing weeks before moving day. Allow yourself the time to do the packing slowly.
Move boxes into a spare room to keep them out of sight and out of mind for pets. Do everything possible to keep things as routine as possible to stave off skittery critters. Then slowly introduce the packing materials and get them used to the packing necessities.
Be Road Ready Ahead of Time
Even for a short move, it’s wise to put your pets into crates or carriers to prevent them from running away or impeding safe driving. If your pet is not crate trained or familiar with a crate, introduce it gradually.
Get them acclimated to the crate. Coax your pet into its crate by placing food or a toy inside. Then reward them with treats after each successful crating session.
Eventually, move the crate into your car and take short drives. This will help your pet get used to riding in the crate-carrier while in the car. These practice runs will go a long way in preparing for moving day.
Arrange for a Pet Sitter on Moving Day
Pets get anxious when there is a lot of disruptive activity going on. Ease their stress by having a friend or pet sitter watch them on moving day. This will keep them out of the movers’ way and protect them and keep them secure. Make arrangements to have them go to a friend’s home or put together a “safe room” at your house so that they are sheltered in a particular room already emptied of boxes and moving items.
Prep the New Home With Pet Safety in Mind
Pet-proof your new home from top to bottom to make it safe. If you have a fence in the yard, check every inch for spots they could escape. Use appropriate gates as needed, inside and out.
It’s often best to put pets in a spare room while unloading, which keeps them safe and gives them time to adjust to the new place at their own pace.
Make sure potentially dangerous items like cleaning supplies or human food are cleared out as you unpack.
Tips for Getting Pets Calm and Settled In
The new space is unfamiliar for pets, but letting them explore freely too soon can worsen their unease. Show them where food and water are located in a quiet room separate from unpacking zones. Don’t forget litter for the kitties, pee pads for dogs, and of course, some of their favorite toys within their ‘home base.’
Be sure to keep your dog on a leash. The new environment might be overwhelming and cause your dog to bolt. It will take some time for your dogs to learn where they are allowed inside and outside your new home.
As pets adjust and the home environment settles down, gradually introduce them to more small sections of their new home. Being patient is the key, as they will feed off your anxieties. Stay calm, relaxed, and collected to support your pet during this trying experience.
Planning to Move?
If you need a moving company, we are your solution! Contact us today for a quote and more information to streamline your next short or long-distance move.