When you find the perfect home for you and your family, that also includes your pets. But sometimes, your pets can require a little bit more preparation and planning for a safe and happy move. It’s hard enough to stay organized when moving without pets, so it’s all the more important to sort out your pet moving plans as far ahead of time as possible!
GETTING YOUR PETS "TRAVEL READY"
Pets that aren’t familiar with traveling in a car, particularly cats, need to get comfortable with vehicles and crates ahead of time. In the weeks leading up to the move, make sure to take your dog in the car with you as much as possible so they can get used to driving outside of quick trips to the vet.
For cats, leave their crate out with some of their toys or blankets inside to allow them time to get used to sitting in it so their first experience isn’t being locked inside for a road trip.
Make sure to pack a bag for your pet, too! You’ll be putting all your stuff and your pet’s stuff into boxes to move, so make sure they have several days of essentials packed up so you don’t have to rush to dig their essentials out of a box before you have a chance to settle into your new home.
Snacks, essential toys, and medicine, are all great things to include in their bag. Dogs and cats could even do with a small bed or blanket if you have space.
PET FRIENDLY HOTELS
You have enough on your plate making plans for yourself, your family, and all your possessions, but if you’re moving far enough to necessitate an overnight stay, be sure to book a pet friendly hotel. Moving with pets isn’t like moving with plants, as not all hotels are as accommodating for animals. Pet-friendly-hotels.net has a great resource for locating fido friendly lodging.
BIRDS, FISH, LIZARDS & SNAKES... oh my...
Reptiles and amphibians can be severely shocked by drastic changes in their environment. While significant changes are unavoidable when you’re moving, you can minimize the impact on lizzy. First, make as many of the initial changes as gradual as possible. If they’re riding in a different carrier than normal, give them a chance to gain a familiarity with it prior to the trip so you’re not stacking multiple stressful transitions together too quickly. During travel, try to keep their habitat temperature consistent, and return them to a stable environment as soon as possible after you get to your destination.
Fish are obviously not designed to travel outside of water, and the associated stress can be so severe it causes a long term impact, and maybe even death. Before you move with fish you should evaluate whether or not it’s better to simply find a new home for your aquatic friends. If you do move with them, they can survive short trips in bags filled with old water from their tank. Just be sure to have a way to get them back into their normal habitat as fast as possible upon arrival to your new home.
Keep your birds in a cage throughout the entire moving process. They may be well behaved on most other days, but in the chaos of moving, birds have been known to fly the coop. This is especially problematic if you’re far from home, as they’ll be less likely to find their way back in unfamiliar territory.
ITS THE LAW
Make sure your legal bases are covered! It’s not a common occurrence, but state troopers may ask for a current health certificate for your pet if you get pulled over, so make sure you have one on hand before moving. In fact, it’s wise to get all your records from your veterinarian before moving long distances so your pet’s new provider has their information.
You’ll also want to be aware of any other local or state laws regarding pet ownership for your new home. Different states have different requirements for chips, tags, vaccines, and other details, especially if you have an exotic pet, which may have its own unique set of permits and other requirements. The US Department of Agriculture has an excellent resource for identifying all state laws you need to know when moving with pets.
Finally, while it’s not a governing authority, your landlord or homeowners association will have their own special requirements for pets in their neighborhood or property, so be sure to have clear expectations. Ideally, you would have clarified this portion long before moving day.
AFTER THE MOVE: Adjusting to new Home
Before letting your pets loose in your new home, make sure you do a quick scan to make sure thee previous owners didn’t leave any hazards behind. Mouse traps, dangerous chemicals, or other surprises should be caught before they’re a problem.
Perform a similar inspection outside. If you have a fenced yard, make sure the fence doesn’t have any holes, and check for potentially poisonous plants and other outdoor dangers.
Meet your neighbors and their pets so your dog can socialize quickly and become more comfortable in the new neighborhood, and be sure to keep them on a leash when outside your fence. If they aren’t familiar with the area yet, you don’t want them running off.
To relocate your utilities and home services, be sure to call Direct Home Connect. We can move it all in one call, including television, internet, security and energy.