Moving with pets? Here are 5 tips

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    People love their pets. They go to great lengths to care for their animal companions. In the US, 67 percent of households have a pet. Some prefer the traditional ones such as dogs and cats while others gravitate more toward exotic animals. While pets add a lot of joy to your household, things get tricky when you want to move. Relocation is a part of life and comes with multiple challenges. When you add your pet to the picture, things get more complicated. However, don’t despair. If moving with pets is what you have to do, here are 5 tips that can make things a lot easier.

    1.     Prepare your pet for the move

    Pets don’t love sudden changes. If you own a cat, for instance, you probably know how long it takes for your pet to familiarize itself with new locations. Fortunately, you can ease the stress if you prepare your pet for the move gradually.

    a. Familiarize your pet with moving elements

    You should slowly introduce your pet to the elements of moving, like boxes and packing materials. This helps them get used to the unusual sights and sounds associated with moving.

    b. Don’t disrupt their everyday routine

    Maintaining their regular feeding and playtime schedule during this period of change is also something you should do. It’s because the consistency in their daily routine offers stability amidst the disruption of moving.

    c. Ensure a smooth transition to the new environment

    If feasible, visit your new home with your pet before the move. This allows them to explore and get accustomed to the new space. Additionally, assess the safety of the area by checking gates, fences, and the landscape to ensure it’s suitable for your pet.

    Discussing the move with your veterinarian is also essential. They can provide valuable advice, transfer medical records, and suggest a new vet near your new home. Finally, companies like Fairfax Transfer and Storage might offer additional guidance on pet-friendly moving practices, but the focus should be on your pet’s comfort and familiarity with the process.

    cats in a box
    When moving with pets, try to maintain their daily routines as much as possible.

    2.     Tuck the pet away during the move

    A house move can stress your pet, so you have to plan early where your pet will stay as you pack. You can choose your friend’s place to remove the pet from the stressful action. Pets love peace and quickly become agitated if you have many people in the house moving in and out. Here are some of the options for a temporary safe haven for your pet:

    • Friend or family member’s home. A familiar person’s home can be comforting for your pet.
    • Quiet room. Choose a room in your current or new home that’s away from the moving chaos.
    • Pet sitter. Hiring a pet sitter can ensure your pet gets the attention and care they need during the move.
    • Professional boarding. A boarding facility can provide a safe and professional environment for your pet.

    Once you move, one of your first tasks should be to find a comfortable place to reduce the animal’s discomfort. Unpacking is hectic, with many people around and a lot of noise involved. Therefore, as soon as you arrive at your new home, set up a quiet place away from the busy traffic and guarantee your pet’s safety. As you unpack and arrange your new house, check on the pet regularly to make sure they are alright.

    3.     Pack a pet bag

    Amid the hassle of a move, you can easily forget your pet’s most treasured items. To avoid this scenario, create a checklist of all your pet’s supplies, toys, and items the animal likes. Some items may come in handy when you move to your new home to help your pet acclimatize fast. Here are the most important items for each type of pet you should try not to forget to bring with you:

    • Dogs: Leash, favorite toys, bedding, food and water bowls, dog food, treats, any medication, waste bags.
    • Cats: Litter box, litter, food and water dishes, cat food, favorite toys, scratching post, any medication, comfortable bedding.
    • Birds: Cage, bird food, water dishes, toys, perches, cage liner, and any medication.
    • Small mammals (like rabbits and hamsters): Cage or habitat, bedding material, food and water containers, hay or pellets, chew toys, exercise wheel (if applicable).
    • Reptiles: Portable terrarium or habitat, a heating pad or lamp, substrate, water bowl, food (raw or prepared), any specific supplements or medication.
    • Fish: Portable tank or container, water conditioner, fish food, net, decorations, or plants from the original tank for familiarity.

    If it turns out you have forgotten something, don’t sweat it. There is a pretty good delivery service Northern Virginia companies provide that can make sure all your beloved pet’s items arrive safely and quickly to you.

    a hamster in front of its tiny house
    Try not to forget your pet’s essentials.

    4.     Give your pet a house tour

    Once you set up the main items in your home, get your pet and start a tour of every room. Don’t let the pet roam freely, at least not immediately. Rather, take them to each room yourself and explore. If left to explore on their own after setting their paw into your new home for the first time, they may choose to mark the territory the way you won’t like it. That could very likely end up in a fight between the pet and the owner. You don’t want to start the first day of living in your new home on a bad note, do you?

    Moreover, if you have set up the pet’s place, introduce the new home gradually during the tour. Don’t rush through the process as you might overwhelm and stress the already frightened animal. Before the tour, try to unpack as much of the familiar house stuff such as furniture to make your pet more comfortable.

    5.     Shower your furry (or feathery) buddy with extra love and care

    Moving with pets requires not only practical preparations but also emotional support for your animal companion. The poor thing has already settled comfortably into your old home and doesn’t understand the need for the move. To make things easier, show extra affection to ease the pet’s discomfort. As your pet adjusts to the idea of relocating, it’s important to shower them with extra love and care to ease their discomfort and anxiety.

    Comforting strategies to apply when moving with pets

    While packing, which can be efficiently handled by a packing service Northern Virginia offers, your pet needs your affection more than ever. That comfort can come in the following forms:

    • Maintain regular playtimes and cuddle sessions, even if you’re busy.
    • Keep their favorite toys and bedding accessible to them.
    • Speak to them in a calming voice and provide reassuring physical contact.
    • Try to keep their routine as normal as possible to provide a sense of stability.

    Hire the professionals to help you

    If your move is a long-distance one, you might want to hire professionals, such as the interstate movers Northern Virginia residents trust, who offer pet-friendly services. During the actual move, you can further support your pet by:

    • Creating a comfortable space in the vehicle for them.
    • Bringing along their favorite treats and toys for the journey.
    • Scheduling regular stops on longer trips for exercise and bathroom breaks.
    • Giving them time and space to explore and acclimate to the new home at their own pace.

    Also, if you notice any health complications, contact your vet immediately for advice.

    a person petting a dog which everyone should do when moving with pets
    Keep giving your animal companion all the love they need and deserve.

    Simplifying your pet’s moving experience is easy with these tips

    Moving with pets requires careful planning and extra care. From preparing a pet-friendly space to packing their essentials, each step brings you closer to their comfort. However, if the thought of juggling these responsibilities seems too overwhelming, don’t hesitate to contact us. Let us ease the burden and help ensure a smooth transition for you and your animal friend. And don’t forget to give every ounce of love you can spare to your beloved animal buddy, and they will feel a lot less anxious.

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