July 8, 2018

Moving with pets – five top tips

Over 60% of Australians own pets – and they’re naturally a huge part of our home lives. But having a pet in the family can add to the natural stress and disruption involved during the moving process. Here we share our top tips to help you prepare in advance for the move and maintain calm and order for you and your pets during this often chaotic time.

Tips for moving with cats
Unlike dogs, cats are less happy to ‘go with the flow’. They are naturally territorial and can get very attached to their familiar home environment. For this reason moving can be particularly stressful for them – so it’s important to be aware of the things you can do to minimise the impact of the relocation.

There’s little you can do to prepare before the move – but what you do on the day and during the settling in period will be important. Ensure their carrier contains their favourite bedding and toys with familiar scents, and only open up the carrier once the new environment is quiet and calm. Letting them out too early could cause them to hide, hurt themselves or slip out and get lost during the comings and goings. Allow them to explore at their own pace, introducing them to the new property one room at a time. Wait for a few days to let them outside, starting with the yard for a few minutes at a time before allowing them to properly explore their new surroundings.

Tips for moving with dogs
Dogs are generally easy to move with – but if they are prone to stress or anxiety the relocation could be difficult for them. You may like to send them to stay with relatives or friends they know well whilst you prepare the house and pack up if they are especially excitable or elderly. Before you introduce them to your new home make sure their things are set up ready for them – bed, crate, food bowls. Have plenty of treats on hand for positive reinforcement, as this will help you to teach them the new rules of the house and show them where they are allowed and where they’re not. If your dog is anxious or stressed you may like to help them cope with a pheromone plug in or animal anxiety vest.

Small furry friends and reptiles
If you have rodents, rabbits or other small furry family members, it’s important to make necessary preparations for the move. Reptiles in particular will need careful handling and transportation along with their kit. It might be worth enlisting professional assistance from a company that specialises in moving reptiles, snakes, spiders and other more unusual pets, as they will ensure that your pet is well cared for throughout. If you need to fly to your destination they may even drive or accompany your pet on its journey.