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Moving House With Animals

Moving house with pets is an exciting yet stressful time for everyone involved – especially our furry or feathered companions. Whether you’re a cat or dog owner, you have birds, a hamster, fish, or guinea pigs, this guide aims to make moving house with animals as smooth as possible for your beloved pets.

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes



1. Moving Home with a Cat or a Dog

Before Your Pet’s Relocation: Prepare Your Cat or Dog

Think ahead: Thorough planning and early decision-making are key to a stress-free pets relocation for cats and dogs. Will your feline prefer the likely quieter environment of staying in a friend’s care or a trusted pet sitter on moving day? Or is your kitty or pup more comfortable directly by your side? Consider what might suit them best based on their unique needs and pet personality – so you can make the best choice for their care on a moving day.

When Moving With Cats

Make sure you have a ‘safe room’ in both your current and future homes – think of it as your cat’s personal sanctuary. Start introducing your feline to this concept a few weeks before you move to ease the transition.

Deck the space out with your cat’s familiar items, like their:

  • Bed
  • Favourite toys
  • Litter box

Upon arrival to your new home, immediately put your kitty in a room that mirrors their ‘safe room’ and contains their familiar items. This continuity of environment provides comfort and security in a new setting.

Want to find out even more about moving with a cat? Check out Cat Protection UK’s asset on moving house with felines here.

If You’re Moving With a Dog

Sticking to your old routine amidst all the packing and organising for your move, can significantly reduce your canine companion’s anxiety levels. Here’s what you can do to keep those tails wagging:

  • Regular walks on your familiar schedule
  • Maintain their usual feeding times

A bit of the usual amidst the mayhem can work wonders for your doggo’s nerves. It’s like reassuring them that, yes, most of your furniture is gone tucked in a moving van, but walkies and dinner time are still the same old. Phew!

Curious to find out even more about moving with a pup? Dive into our detailed guide on making moving day a walk in the park for you and your dog. Check it out here!

Ready to Make Your Move Smooth Like a Cat’s Nap?

Choosing a moving company with experience in handling pets can make all the difference. These experts can offer tailored advice to make the transition smoother for your pets, and many moving firms also provide international pet transport, and other specialised services to cater to your furry friend’s needs.

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The Big Day: Pets Relocation with Peace of Mind

#1. Safety First

On the day of the move, ensuring your furry friend’s safety is the #1 priority. Consider the following:

  • For cats, a well-ventilated and comfortable carrier is essential; as is their ‘safe room’ in your new house, equipped with their familiar items and scents.

  • For dogs, consider using a leash, or also set up a safe room for them, so they can get some peace and quiet away from the hustle and bustle of moving.

#2. Frequent Breaks

If your move involves a long car journey, plan for regular stops. Dogs will appreciate the chance to stretch their legs and relieve themselves. For long car rides with cats, a little reassurance and maybe even a portable litter box (again, with some of their dirty litter for the familiar scent) can help manage stress.

#3. Update Microchip and Identification

It’s crucial to update your pet’s microchip information and tags with your new address and contact details. The vet or service that microchipped your dog links the chip to a dedicated database, like Petlog or Identibase. Let them know you are moving house with your pet so they can update your new address and contact information on their system.

Settling In: Making Your New House a Home for Your Pets

#1. Routine Reinforcement

As soon as possible, establish a new routine that aligns with your cat or dog’s old one.

  • After relocating with a dog, keeping up with the usual walk times and meal schedules can help them adjust.

  • When moving cats to a new home, they may need quieter and more gradual introductions to their unfamiliar surroundings, but maintaining feeding routines can aid in this process too.

#2. Exploration and Adjustment

Allow your pets to explore their new home at their own pace. For dogs, supervised access to the backyard or nearby walks can be comforting. Cats, known for their curiosity, will benefit from gradually expanding their accessible area as they grow more confident.

2. Moving Birds, Hamsters, Guinea Pigs, Fish & Small Pets

The care and preparation for moving house with animals like birds, hamsters, guinea pigs or fish are equally important as when moving with larger pets like cats or dogs. To help reduce sress and anxiety, consider the following tips to keep their habitats stable and familiar during the move:

  • Transportation Tips: Secure cages or tanks properly in your vehicle to prevent undue movement. Covering cages with a breathable cloth can also help reduce stress for birds by limiting visual stimuli.

  • Environmental Consistency: Once at your new home, set up your small pets’ living areas as similarly as possible to their previous ones. This familiarity helps them adjust to their new surroundings more safely and calmly.

  • Health and Comfort: Monitor your small pet friends for signs of stress and keep their living conditions clean and comfortable, like always. Familiar toys, hiding spots and the occasional treat can also help comfort them during the transition.

Remember, your animals rely on you for their comfort and security, especially during times of change. By following these guidelines, you can provide a safe and stress-free moving experience for all members of your family, no matter how small or furry they may be.

3. General Tips for Moving House With Pets of All Sorts

#1. Veterinary Care and Pets’ Relocation

It’s important to update your veterinary records and ensure your pets are registered with a vet in your new area as soon as possible. This ensures they have access to medical care and regular checkups there.

#2. Patience and Understanding

Each animal will adjust to their new home in their own time. Offer plenty of love, patience, and reassurance as they navigate this significant change. ♡

Don’t Let Moving Ruffle Your Feathers!

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Pets Relocation without Anxiety: Final Thoughts

Shifting your den along with your menagerie? No need for any kerfuffle. Your attention to their needs and comfort can turn the potentially stressful experience of moving into a smooth transition for the entire family.

Here’s to moving without a hitch – may your new abode be filled with love, laughter, and endless tail wags (or purrs, or chirps!).

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