Moving home is not only stressful for you, but can be for your pets as well. As pet owners, it’s your responsibility to ensure that your furry friends are comfortable and safe during the moving process. Whether you’re moving across town or to a different state, there are several things you can do to make the transition easier for your pets.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss our key tips for moving with pets that will help make the big house move less stressful for both you and your furry friend. From preparing a travel cage and packing familiar items to keeping doors closed and providing plenty of food and toys, we’ve got you covered.

Moving with pets can be challenging, but it doesn’t have to be stressful. Following these tips, you can ensure that your furry friend is comfortable and safe during the trip. Remember, a happy pet means a happy owner!

dog sitting in a living room with pets playing in boxes

1. Check in with your Vet Before the Move

A pre-emptive visit to your vet before moving house can help ensure your pet’s health and well-being during the transition. They may be able to recommend solutions such as calming medications or natural remedies that can help ease their nerves and make the transition smoother. Taking the time and effort to ensure their comfort throughout this process is well worth it in the end.

Your local veterinarian can help you to make the move easier for your pet, including:
Checking your pet’s overall health. Your vet can make sure that your pet is up to date on vaccinations and that their overall health is good. This is important, as moving can be stressful for pets and can weaken their immune systems.

  • Providing your pet with a health certificate: Some states require a health certificate for pets when they are moving. Your vet can provide you with a health certificate that will show that your pet is healthy and up to date on vaccinations.
  • Prescribing medication for anxiety: If your pet is prone to anxiety, your vet may prescribe medication to help them cope with the stress of moving.
  • Providing tips for travelling with pets: Your vet can provide you with tips for travelling with pets safely and comfortably.

By checking in with your vet before you move, you can help make sure that your pet has a smooth transition to their new home.

2. Prepare an Overnight Kit and Emergency Kit for Your Pet

Overnight and emergency kits will ensure that you are well-prepared in case of unforeseen circumstances. Things such as a delayed flight or car breakdown have the potential to cause issues.

Overnight Kit

An overnight kit should include enough food, water, and medication for at least three days. Make sure to pack your pet’s favourite toys, blankets, and bedding to help them feel more comfortable in a new environment. If you’re staying at a hotel or Airbnb, call ahead of time to make sure they allow pets.

It’s also important to include a leash, a collar with ID tags, and a copy of your pet’s medical records in case of an emergency. The ID tags should have your current contact information so that you can be reached if your pet gets lost. Additionally, bring any necessary grooming tools such as brushes or nail clippers.

Emergency Kit

In addition to the overnight kit, it’s important to have an emergency kit on hand. This should include a first aid kit with items such as gauze pads, antiseptic wipes, tweezers, and scissors. It’s also important to pack any medications that you may need during an emergency.

A flashlight is another essential item for an emergency kit since power outages can occur during natural disasters or other emergencies. Finally, make sure you have a list of emergency contacts including your vet’s phone number so that you can quickly get in touch with someone who can help if needed.

3. Pack Your Pet’s Belongings Last and Unpack Them First

As you pack up your belongings, don’t forget to pack your pet’s belongings last and unpack them first. This way, they will have familiar items around them as they adjust to their new surroundings.

Helping Your Cats Adjust

Cats are creatures of habit and may take longer to adjust to a new home than dogs. To make the transition easier for them, start by setting up a quiet room where they can feel safe and secure. Place their litter box in this room and show them where it is located. If possible, use the same type of litter that you used in your old home.
Once your cat has settled into their new space, gradually introduce them to other areas of the house. Allow them to explore at their own pace and provide plenty of hiding spots where they can retreat if they feel overwhelmed.

Keeping Their Water Bowls in the Same Spot

Dogs also need time to adjust to a new environment. One way you can help ease the transition is by keeping their water bowl in the same spot as before. This will give them a sense of familiarity and comfort.

Take Your Dog for a Walk Around the New Neighborhood

To help your dog get used to their new surroundings, take them for walks around the neighbourhood. This will allow them to become familiar with the sights, sounds, and smells of their new space.

dog being taken for a walk

4. Start Packing Early and Gradually Introduce Moving Boxes

Start Packing Early

Packing is one of the most time-consuming aspects of moving. To avoid last-minute rush and reduce stress, start packing early at your own pace. Begin with non-essential items such as seasonal clothing or decorations.

Pack one room at a time, starting with rooms that are used less frequently such as guest bedrooms or storage areas. This will allow you to pack at your own pace without disrupting your pet’s routine too much.

Plan Ahead to Reduce Stress for Your Pets During the Move

It’s important to have a solid plan in place to minimise risk and reduce stress for your furry friends.

One of the best ways to reduce stress is by planning ahead. Start the planning process days in advance to ensure a stress-free move for all involved. Create a checklist of things that need to be done before moving day, such as booking pet-friendly accommodations, scheduling vet appointments, and updating their identification tags.

Take Extra Care of Dogs

Dogs require extra care during the moving process as they may become anxious or stressed due to changes in their routine and environment. To make the transition easier for them, gradually introduce moving boxes into your home several weeks before the move.

This will help them get used to seeing boxes around the house and prevent them from getting overwhelmed when you finally move. You can also create a safe space for them by setting up their crate or bed in a quiet room away from all the commotion.

5. Hire a Pet Transportation Company for Longer Moves

Specialised Carriers for Pets during Long Moves

One of the most challenging aspects of moving with pets is ensuring their safety and comfort during transportation. For longer moves or interstate moves, hiring a pet transportation company that provides a specialised carrier can be an excellent option to reduce stress for both you and your pet.

Pet transportation companies have experience in handling pets and providing them with a comfortable environment during transportation. They use a specialised carrier that is designed to meet the specific needs of different types of pets. For instance, tank carriers are used for transporting fish and other aquatic pets, while dog and cat carriers are designed with enough space for movement.

Car Transportation Services for Pets

In addition to transporting pets via air or road, some pet transportation companies also offer car transportation services for pets. This service is particularly useful when you’re moving locally or within a short distance.

The car transport service ensures that your furry friend doesn’t get stressed out by being transported in unfamiliar surroundings. The trained personnel will pick up your pet from your current location and transport them safely to their destination.

dog sitting in car being transported

6. Pet Proof Your New Home

Secure the Perimeter

Before letting your pets roam free in your new home, it’s crucial to ensure that your yard and garden are secure. Examine the fencing for any gaps or weak points, and repair them as needed. If you have a pool, make sure there’s a sturdy pool fence installed to prevent your pets from accidentally falling in. Additionally, ensure that any gates or entry points are properly latched to prevent your pets from escaping.

Remove Toxic Plants

Some plants commonly found in Australian gardens can be harmful to pets if ingested. Before moving in, research and identify any potentially dangerous plants in your new house’s garden, and remove them or place them in an area inaccessible to your pets. Popular toxic plants to watch out for include lilies, oleander, and sago palm.

Address Potential Hazards Indoors

Examine your new home for potential hazards, such as exposed wires or loose cables, and secure them out of your pets’ reach. Similarly, be mindful of small objects or choking hazards, like coins or children’s toys, that may be lying around. Secure all cupboards and cabinets that contain cleaning products, chemicals, or medications to prevent your pets from accessing these harmful substances.

Create a Pet-friendly Space

Establish a designated area for your pets that is warm, comfortable, and familiar. This can include their bedding, toys, and food bowls. This dedicated space will help your pets feel more at ease in their new house, while also limiting the areas they can access and potentially damage.

Install Pet-Friendly Flooring

Opt for flooring materials that are resistant to scratches and easy to clean, such as vinyl, laminate, or ceramic tiles. If you prefer carpets, choose ones with low pile or stain-resistant features, as these are more pet-friendly options.

Cover Windows and Balconies

To prevent your pets from escaping or falling, ensure that all windows and balconies are properly screened or fitted with safety grilles. If your pets are prone to scratching or damaging screens, consider installing heavy-duty pet screens for added durability.

7. Help Your Pets Settle into Their New Home

Maintain Their Routine

Maintaining a consistent daily routine can significantly ease your pets’ anxiety in your new house. Continue with their regular feeding times, walks, and playtime as much as possible. A sense of familiarity can provide comfort and stability as they adjust to their new surroundings.

Gradual Introductions

Introduce your pets to their new home slowly and gradually. Begin by allowing them to explore one room at a time while keeping doors closed to prevent them from becoming overwhelmed or lost. Gradually expand their access to the rest of the house, keeping a close eye on their reactions and comfort levels.

Use Familiar Items

Surround your pets with familiar items from your previous home, such as bedding, toys, and blankets. The familiar scents on these items will help your pets feel more secure in their new environment. Additionally, avoid introducing too many new items or toys at once, as this can be overwhelming.

Offer Comfort and Reassurance

Spend quality time with your pets during the initial days in your new house. Offer comfort, reassurance, and gentle affection to help them feel more relaxed. Be patient and understanding if your pets exhibit signs of anxiety, such as hiding, increased vocalisation, or changes in appetite. These behaviours may subside as they become more familiar with their new surroundings.

Encourage Socialisation

Once your pets have had some time to adjust to their new space, introduce them to your new neighbours and any local pets, if appropriate. Encouraging positive interactions with others can help your pets feel more at ease in their new community.

Monitor Their Behaviour

Keep a close eye on your pets’ behaviour during the first few weeks in your new home. Be vigilant for any signs of stress or illness, and consult your vet if you have concerns about their well-being. It may take some time for your pets to fully acclimate to their new surroundings, so be patient and supportive throughout the process.

Seek Professional Help if Needed

If your pet continues to display signs of stress or anxiety after several weeks, consider seeking professional advice from a veterinarian or animal behaviourist. They can provide tailored recommendations and support to help your pet adjust to their new house more effectively.

Making Moving Day Less Stressful for Your Pet

Moving house is an exciting new chapter for you and your pets, but it can also bring about feelings of stress and uncertainty. By following the tips provided in this blog, you can make the transition smoother and more comfortable for your furry companions. From pet-proofing your new home to helping them settle in, it’s crucial to approach the process with care and understanding.

As you embark on this journey, remember that maintaining a routine, providing comfort and familiarity, and monitoring your pets’ well-being are essential to their successful acclimation. Take the time to address their needs and concerns, and don’t hesitate to seek professional advice if necessary.

Ultimately, your love, support, and attention will be the key factors in helping your pets adjust to their new home. With patience and commitment, you can ensure that your pets feel secure and content during the big move, allowing you both to enjoy a fresh start together.

As a professional removal company, Fox Removals understands the importance of a stress-free. If you want to remove the stress of the move and leave it all up to the professionals, you can contact us at Fox Removals for a free quote.