Moving can be stressful, especially if you’re moving long distance. What is even more stressful? Moving long distance with pets! Here are the top 5 tips to help make the move to your new home smoother, easier and less stressful for you and your furry family member.
Tip #1: Many pets, cats in particular, have a hard time adjusting to major changes. There are a few ways you can help your pets stay calmer throughout the process. First, get a head start on packing and bring in only a few moving boxes at a time. Allow your cat or small dog to sit in or even play in the boxes. Cats LOVE boxes so letting them explore and play in the boxes prevents them from being scared and stressed. Bonus: By packing a little at a time, you’ll have a chance to declutter and get rid of things you don’t want to move to the new home.
Tip #2: Create positive association for your pet with their crate. Especially if your upcoming move is long distance, your pet will be spending long hours in their crate. If the only association they have with their crate involves vet visits and other unpleasant trips, you’ll have one super stressed pet for the duration of your move. You CAN change how your cat or dog feels about their crate. First, bring the crate into the home as soon as you have decided to move and leave it with the door open in an area your pet is already comfortable in. The more time your cat or dog has to become accustomed to the crate as part of daily life, the calmer they will be during the move. Allow them to investigate the crate, sleep in it and eat in it. As you get closer to the move, close them into the crate and move around the house with them. Once your pet becomes used to moving around the house in their crate, begin taking them for short car rides, lengthening the ride as moving day approaches. After every crate session with your pet, reward them with treats, play time, hugs and kisses. These activities will make crate time less scary and stressful for your pet.
Tip # 3: When moving a long distance that will require overnight stops along the way, plan your stops ahead of time. When you know where you intend to stop each day, search for pet-friendly accommodations in those towns or cities. Make sure to call hotels before you book to ensure the information online regarding their pet policies and pet fees has not changed. You can also search for pet-friendly accommodations through AirBNB. Make sure to book your stay several weeks ahead of your move to ensure you have a welcoming place to stay overnight for both you and your pet.
Tip #4: Carry your pet’s medical records, vaccination record and rabies tag information with you at all times. Dogs should wear their rabies tag with their usual tag on their collar. If your cat tolerates wearing a collar, make sure their current rabies tag is on it. If your pet is microchipped, be sure to update your contact information with the microchip provider. Often, you can include the rabies tag information with the data stored about your pet with the microchip company. This is especially helpful if your pet gets loose or gets lost during the move.
Tip #5: Remember that you know your pet better than anyone. If you know your pet is prone to anxiety, you can try soothing garments such as Thunder Shirts or if needed, talk to your vet about prescribing a mild sedative or anxiety medication to help keep your pet calm and safe during the trip.
Moving is stressful. Whether you’re moving across town or several states away, moving to a new home always presents challenges. If you have furry family members, you’ll want to help them be prepared for the move as much as possible. Following these top 5 tips for moving with your pets to your new home in Myrtle Beach will help you make the experience smoother and calmer for both you and your dog or cat.