Getting ready to move to a new location is exciting, thrilling, and exhausting. Perhaps it is a bit sad, scary, and frustrating. You are going to be on an emotional rollercoaster for some time before, during, and after the move. If you are moving with pets, then they are going to go through some emotional challenges as well. Here are some tips to help your dogs and cats have a less stressful move.
1. Start Cage Training Early
Cage training is very helpful for many reasons. It works for dogs and cats. It is very useful for large dogs. The objective of cage training is not to make the animal feel trapped and confined but instead to give it a safe place to rest that is comfortable and free from danger.
Dogs are instinctively den animals. This is why they like to dig holes. Not only are holes a great place to hide things like bones but if the holes are big enough they become a wonderful place to rest that is cooler in the hot weather and warmer in the cold weather.
A cage is a way to replicate this wonderful snuggly feeling that dogs get from sleeping in holes. Cage training is getting the dog to enjoy being in the cage and the door can be left open. When transporting an animal that already loves their cage, it can be put in the back seat and the dog will jump right in. The door can be closed for security after the dog or cat is used to using the cage.
If you have time to cage-train your dog or cat before the move this is very helpful. It provides more safety in transport and after you arrive at your new location.
2. Get Your Pet Used to Vehicle Exposure and Trip Practice
If you plan to take your animal to the new location in a vehicle be sure that they are comfortable going for a ride and do not get car sick. Take them on a short ride to get them comfortable going for rides in a car.
Never leave an animal locked in a car alone. Even on a mild day, the car heats up so quickly that the inside temperature rises to a deadly level in a matter of a few minutes. If you take your best friend on car rides, never leave them alone in the car.
3. Take Your Pet to the Vet for a Health Checkup
Before making a move with a pet, it is important to take the pet to your veterinarian for a health checkup. Be sure that all vaccinations are current and that the animal is in a healthy condition to make the trip safely.
4. Preparing Your Pet for Air Travel
If you take an airplane to the new location, you can take your pet on the plane with you if it is small enough to fit in a cage that goes under your seat. The cage cannot be bigger than allowed carry-on luggage. For small animals, you can buy a pet ticket and carry your pet with you.
Be sure to make a pet ticket reservation well in advance because the airlines that have this service have a limit on the number of pets (usually two) that can travel on any particular flight.
If the animal is too large to fit under the seat in a small cage, it can safely travel in a larger cage in the cargo hold. Be sure to fly on a top-quality airline that has a good safety record and a good reputation for carefully transporting animals.
5. Get Your Pet Microchipped Before the Move
You want to get a microchip put under your pet’s skin by your vet if there is not already one placed there. Update the online record of your contact information to the new location, right when you leave the old one. In this way, if your pet gets lost while you are traveling the contact information to reach you will be accurate. All animal rescue places will search for a microchip and will contact you if they find your lost pet.
6. Ensure Smooth Transition for Your Pet
If possible, take your pet to the new location when you can spend some quality time with your pet after you arrive. You want the pet to feel like they are going with you on an adventure. You want them to see that you are right there with them enjoying the new experiences. If you cannot spend time at the new location because of other moving responsibilities, perhaps you can delay taking your pet until after you complete the move. Then, have a separate pet move-in day.
7. Notice the Signs of Relocation Trauma for Your Pet
It is not uncommon for pets to have some nervousness when taken to a new place. There are so many smells that can be both enjoyable and terrifying. For example, if the neighbor’s house has a big dog in the backyard, your cat may be traumatized.
Try to think from your pet’s point of view. Keep cats inside and safe. Encourage them to stay next to you until you are certain that nothing stressful and dangerous will occur if they are free to be outside on their own.
8. Create a Secure New Pet Space in Your New Home
In the new location, the cage is a secure space for animals that are cage-trained. If your pet is not used to sleeping in a cage, then you will want to create a special secure place for your pet.
Cats are good at finding a hiding spot, which might be inside a cupboard, behind the sofa, or on the top of a bookcase. Dogs can be encouraged to like the new place by using their bedding or a favorite toy to indicate the spot that is theirs to enjoy.
9. Get in Plenty of Play Time
After moving, take some time to play with your pet. What your pet loves the most is you. They prefer to be with you, no matter where you are.
10. Walk Around Your New Neighborhoods
Dogs love to go for a walk in a new neighborhood. Always take them out for a walk on a leash. To avoid problems, do not let them go out unleashed. Walking is good for your health also and this is a chance to say hello to any neighbors you encounter.
11. Introduction to New Animals
Dogs are very social. Cats not so much. If there is a dog park nearby, you can take your dog there to meet others from the neighborhood. If you have a cat, be careful about encounters with new animals. Do not let a cat go free outside until you are sure there is not another animal that can harm it.
A Pet Friendly Move
The biggest concern when moving with pets is the safety of your pet. Use our tips to improve the chances of having a good moving experience and rent a self-storage unit for any overflow of things that do not fit in your new place.
We’re Your Storage Solution!
Storage Rentals of America is your convenient self-storage solution. So come into our office or give our storage experts a call at 1-800-457-5678. Our call center is available 7 days a week and can help determine which storage unit size best fits your storage needs.