Generally, moving is one of the stressful activities for every family member and pets are not excluded. If people can find it difficult to cope with moving stresses, imagine how your pets feel with the process. According to the Chief Executive of RSPCA Victoria, Dr. Liz Walker, moving is highly stressful for every pet just like people and suggest that, managing change with pets entails patience on the part of the household members.
Pets can quickly get stressed out and reacted when they sense unexpected activities in the home or when they get to a new environment. Moving with pets is not an easy task, but with proper planning, things can work out perfectly and interesting. While this doesn’t come with a particular formula, equipping yourself with some essential tips can help you and make the entire process a bit calmer for you and your companions.
Moving Feedback has reached out to animal experts for some recommendations to keep pets safe and glad during and after moving exercise. Research shows that animals are usually emotional when it comes to changes; hence, pets usually require extra attention to restore confidence in them during moving. Irrespective of how you want to move your pet during moving – either by airline or car; you need to prepare their move as you prepare the entire move. Don’t forget you may need a signed health certificate to move pets especially if you’re flying your pet, as required by most state and airlines regulations. You would need a veterinarian to check your pet to get this certificate. This is not all – read on to discover more.
Tips on Moving with Pets
First thing first – Immediately you made up your mind to move, think about everything involved in the move before reaching out to a mover. In a number of posts on this page, we have discussed many steps involved in planning your move. This article focuses on useful tips to moving with your pets. See the following steps for a successful move with pets:
Finding a New Home
The first thing expected of everyone who is ready to move is to find a new home. This can either be done by an agent or yourself. When you are finding a new home, put your pets into consideration in terms of the area, environment, the easy of exercising, easy route, and much more. Your focus here is to ensure your new location is pet-friendly just as it is to you.
Take a walk around the locality to ensure the property is animal-proof with secure gate to prevent pets from escaping, and that the area has pet parks where your pet can get exercise or a walk-out. You can as well take your pets such as dogs along with you to have some sense of the new neighborhood and perimeter of the new home. Regardless of your pet whether cat, dog, bird, or rabbit, it is essential to make sure the new home is secure and safe for them.
Pets such as dogs are intelligent and can easily sense that something is about to happen whenever they see you packing. If you are the type that had traveled with a pet before, you would know that pets usually watch every move especially when you are packing items related to them. Sometimes, pets think you want to leave, and they will start doing some funny things. The secret here is that; don’t do away with your normal routine with them during packing. While packing, reassures them by coming close to them and keep their routine as often as possible.
Don’t intimidate them that something is about to happen; continue to walk and feed them, as usual, the same way you have been doing before. Surround them with normal things they like as before.
On the other hand, don’t forget to pack an essential pet bag for easy access to them during moving. Put things in place and label them for easy accessibility during and after the move. You can as well seek the advice of the vet to know everything to pack for your pet.
On Moving Day
Experts recommend that you move with your pet in your own car rather than putting them in a truck or boarding them at a cattery or kennel. The secret is that pets respond better to their owners than other people; hence, keep them with you during transportation to your new home. During loading of boxes into the mover’s truck, make sure you keep pets in a crate or closed room or safe space to restrict them from moving out during the process. Studies showed that dogs are better comfortable with moving than cats, as cats find moving difficult because of their territorial nature. In the case of cats, put them in a cat carrier with friendly bedding.
At your New Home
After a lot of stress, you are finally at your new home with your pet. The job is already done. What is next is to settle in with your pet. Before you start hanging artworks and arranging furniture, experts advise that you spend time with your pets to help them adapt to the new environment. Apart from this, it is recommended to do the following to settling in your pets at your new home:
- Set up your pets’ space right away according to each animal abode. You can first set up a temporary corner with their toys, beddings, eating and drinking bowl, and other required items to make them comfortable. Do this to make them feel at home.
- Give lots of attention to them whenever they need or as normal as you do. They need this extra care to tell them everything is perfect in the new home. Keep a routine as much as possible, even when it is hard. Remember, you are dealing with pets, it is only human that quickly understand the situation and consider it.
- Help them to let out energy to prevent tiredness. Studies show that too much energy can increase stress level; hence, helping them to exercise and release some energy will go a long way. You can walk them out the neighborhood to explore the area.
- Stay at home and be patient with them. It only takes a little time; once they are used to the home, they will keep going. Just be patient with them to survive the period.
Checklist for Moving with Pet: What is the Easiest Pet to take care of?
Pet owners want to help their pets quickly adapt to their new surroundings due to their inherent fear. Below is the list of things to do to ensure the happiness of your pets while moving. Each of the items on this checklist should be taken seriously if you want to get a good result as soon as possible.
Pet Regulations Checklist
Consult the rules and regulations before you move your pets. Generally, when moving, you need to travel with certificates that indicate your pet has been given proper inspections and vaccines. Your new home may present different requirements, especially when moving to another state. These include:
- State rules: Each state provides its own laws and regulations as regards pet owners. Visit your state’s Department of Agriculture or Veterinary office.
- Local ordinances: Know more about local ordinances by checking at your City Clerk’s Office. You can know more about licensing rules, restrictions on the number of pets of the individual households, leash laws, as well as zoning laws that may restrict certain animals in residential areas.
- Apartments & Condos: Many neighborhoods do not allow dogs and cats, not to talk of luxurious pets like snakes, ferrets, iguanas, and tarantulas. Be sure to understand your scaly and furry friends’ policies and any additional costs being charged for pets.
- Health certificates: A health certificate is required for dogs in most states, and some even need it for cats and other pets. Check the requirements for your new state to learn more.
- Rabies tags: Rabies tag is required for dogs, cats, and other exotic animals in most states.
- Permits: There may be a need for you to buy a permit before you can move your exotic pet into another state. Get assistance from a veterinary expert for the application process.
Prepare an Overnight Kit
Packing an overnight kit that can be easily accessed is essential. This kit should contain enough food for your dog, toys, kitty litter, and grooming tools to keep your pet alive and comfortable during the first week in your new home.
Contact your Vet
If you are relocating away from the area, tell your veterinarian in order to travel with any prescription medications. And check if there is a recommendation for another vet in your new area.
Keep your Pets away from the Moving Stress
The best way to lower the stress on your pet during a move is to keep them in the calmest area. If you are not going to consider leaving them with a kennel or a friend for just a day, then try as much as possible to keep them away from the action.
You can empty a bedroom on another level and shutting the door or putting the pets in their carrier or kennel in the yard or car but make sure the temperature is conducive for them as well as the availability of food and water to sustain them all through that period.
Ensure regular checking is conducted and endeavor to stick to normal feeding or walking routine as it will help them a lot during the forthcoming changes.
Travel with your Pet in your Vehicle
Travel with your pet to the new house in your personal vehicle. You can put cats and small dogs in a carrier in the back seat of your car and securing them using your vehicle’s seatbelt. You can move a bigger dog in a kennel in the back of the vehicle; you may need to bring down the seat. Some animals find it comfortable to travel in a carrier covered with a blanket during the ride, so they don’t see how the environment changes from the outside.
Don’t release your Pet until you’ve reached your Destination
Your animal can easily get lost when being transported to your new home if proper care is not put in place. You should avoid opening the kennel where the pet is kept until you get to the new home, even if they are docile or well-behaved on the trip. They require a few days to adjust and start to adapt to the new environment.
The number of people keeping their cats indoors for safety purposes keeps appreciating every day, and a good chance to get yours used to an indoor-lifestyle is to get them through a move as they won’t be staying outside in the new place. This transition should be made to work for your benefit.
Keep your Pet Isolated
Move the pet after moving house. Make sure you set up even if it is just a room before you bring in your animal. Place them in one area of the house while they adjust to the new surroundings gradually. Give more attention to your pet and introduce them to many of their familiar blankets or toys ASAP. This will make them feel more at home as you also settle in.
Update their Info
Ensure your pet’s information on their tags or microchip is updated to the new location after your move.
Tip for Moving with Special Pets
Moving with Fish
Moving with a fishes can be so traumatizing and, in some cases, fatal as they are highly responsive to stress. However, you can move them on a short distance in containers filled with water from their old tank (consult the aquarium store nearest to you to get supplies and more information).
The best you can do for your fish is to set them up with a new home with a family or friend, empty the tank and get new fish after unpacking if your move involves a long distance.
Moving with Guinea Pigs
Guinea Pigs are popular to suffer from being jostled or change from one place to another. They have a very susceptible heart, so you have to be careful with guinea pigs and ensure they are moved in a warm, comfortable little carrier.
Moving with Birds
Lastly, there has being a report of feathered pets flying the coop while moving them. Most people publicize that their birds have never experienced flying above the shoulder, and they later regret the comment. Just like most other pets, birds also find change a bit hard. So, even when your parrot refused to enter the cage on a moving day, make sure it does.
How do I keep my Pets Safe during Moving?
Your pet’s safety will be ensured by the devices discussed below. A device that will locate your pets when lost, the one that you will keep with you on the move, and documents for helping your pets in the event of an accident are all listed here.
- ID tags: Wear a collar for your Dog and attach an ID tag to it. Use a leg band for your birds. The pet’s name, name, destination home address, and phone number should all be indicated on the tag
- Microchips: Pets that carry microchips are entered into a pet recovery system so that when they get lost, you will be notified immediately they got found. A microchip is likely on your pet if you get it from a pet store, shelter, or a breeder.
- Pictures: Keep a photograph of your pet to show your new neighbors what it looks like in the event that it gets missing.
- Collars: Make sure your pet is wearing collars while they move with you in a vehicle or a plane. You should endeavor to get a harness for your pets that get scared so that they can wiggle out through it.
- Leashes: Provide a chain and a leash for your pet dog to secure them in your new surrounding in case your fence is still on construction. Also, travel with a spare in case it got broken by your dog.
- Pet carriers: You have to put any pet traveling with you in a plane on a pet carrier. Some pets don’t go through much stress when traveling in a carrier compared to when traveling on the loose. Check around your locality to ask about pet carrier in your area.
- Records: You will be able to get quality health care for your pet when you get the previous health records from your current vet.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will my pet be allowed to fly in the cabin with me?
Although most pet owners prefer to travel side by side with their pets when they fly, this is not possible based on the country and airline rules. You can fly with very small-sized pets in the cabin when on a domestic plane, especially, but pets are required to fly through cargo by most international flights.
We understand that you are probably asking because you want to fly your pets through manifest cargo, and we have one of our representatives ready to help you discover your options and also tell you the safety reasons why cargo manifest (our recommended pet transport when moving) is the best beyond your expectation.
How much will pet move cost?
No pet move is similar and that is why standard pricing is very difficult to come up with. You have to consider factors like origin, pet size, breed, destination, as well as the season of move before you can figure out the costs, and thus the need to discuss with a Consultant before you can get a realistic estimate.
Is cargo travel certainly safe for pets?
Yes, safety is a major concern when it comes to moving a pet and we are sure that moving a pet through flight is very safe when you put every necessary safety measures in place. The safety feature is the reason we are also in the business. You have to begin the process by selecting a pet-friendly airline that provides temperature and pressure-controlled cargo as well as strong, established safety policies for pets.
We also suggest you talk to your vet about any health worries to ensure your pet has a healthy weight through diet and exercise before moving and properly train your pet before the move.
How do I know the requirements for my destination country?
Research is the first step into ensuring a smooth transition for your pets. You can get information on many country’s import instructions through the official websites of their Ministry of Agriculture. Strict countries like Australia, for instance, spells out everything.
Still, some details may not be provided online by other countries, so you may be required to check for information such as health documents, quarantines (if possible), and vaccines through other sources like the country pages IATA.
On these pages, you can also see a page for getting started with your pet move where you can see a list of many country information, client stories, quarantine guides, as well as crate-training steps.
Do American Airlines require a health certificate for pets?
Although health certificate is not required by American Airlines to transport your pets domestically, some states in the country do request for health documents as a requirement. When moving animals to Hawaii and some other international homes, make sure you contact American Airlines to find out about health paperwork requirements for pets.
Is license a requirement for moving dogs?
Do you need any authority and licenses for transporting pets? Professional movers transporting pets must possess a permit issued by the USDA, introducing them as a dealer, carrier, or middleman handler if they are moving regulated pets. Also, your pet mover is required to provide minimum insurance coverage.
What are the things I should do with my pets on Moving Day?
Your cat carrier is an excellent place for your cat to stay in the vehicle on a moving day if the weather permits, as you get set for the journey to your new home. You can place them in the bathroom if the weather is too cold or hot. Also, provide her cat carrier, litter box, food, and water, as well as a closed door.
You can also use a sign that states, “Keep This Door Shut – Cat Can Escape”. You can designate a responsible friend or family member to be the dog sitter or someone who wouldn’t be doing any packing or moving on the exact moving day. You can just get a dog-loving friend to come over and watch your dog while you and your family member tackle the moving-day tasks.
How dogs settle in a new home?
Your dog will probably want a nice place of his own in the new home. Allow your dog to go round the house and back once your movers have bid you farewell. Walk with the dog on a leash as you introduce him to the new home, so he feels secure and safe with you.
The dog will easily feel at home when he quickly adapts to the new smell of his new surroundings. If you are relocating to a smaller house from a larger house, it might take more time for your dog to get used to the new environment because they require enough space and room to exercise.
However, your dog, similar to cats will like to get back to the normal routine ASAP. Your dog will be able to adjust quickly when you walk with him at the usual time and walk the same route many days.
You can also take some time off (if possible) to spend with your pet after the move and before resuming back to work. You can stay away from home for a short time during this adjustment period to get it used to stay alone in their new home.
Always keep your dog inside during this period because leaving them uncared for outside the house could set things backward. There have been several cases of dogs jumping fences in order to get back to their old, familiar environment.
Moving with pets can be as easy as you think if you put things right from the beginning. Once you follow each step accordingly, it only takes a good approach to have a successful relocation with your pets. This post has shared the required information to move with your pets without stress. Have you moved with a pet before? Kindly share your experience in the comment box. Stay tuned for more informative posts from this page!