6 Tips for Successfully Moving to a New Home with Your Pet

Moving into a new home can be overwhelming and stressful for humans and pets alike. You know why you're moving and where you're going, but your pet doesn't! As a result, moving can cause fear, confusion, and disorientation to our beloved furry friends. Follow these tips to keep your pet comfortable and ensure they quickly acclimate to your new home.

1. Say Goodbye to Your Old Mattress

While you’re packing up all of your possessions for the move, take a good look at your old mattress. Mattresses in pet-friendly homes tend to decline much more quickly than average mattresses, which already have a lifespan of just 10 years. If your dog or cat has been sharing your bed, your mattress may be harboring all sorts of unpleasant bacteria and dander, contributing to allergies and respiratory issues. Moving is the perfect opportunity to indulge in a brand new mattress for yourself. Check out this mattress guide before you head to the store so you know exactly what to look for.

2. Don’t Buy New Things for Your Dog

Moving is a great time to upgrade many of the things that you own, but try to confine these new purchases to your own items. Your pet's old things are comforting to them and will make them feel at home much more quickly in an unfamiliar place. If this means packing up a smelly dog bed or a ratty cat tree, so be it. However, researchers suggest that dogs really enjoy new toys, so pick up a couple to distract them from the move.

3. Keep Your Pet Away from Moving Day Action

Moving day is huge source of stress for pets and can even be dangerous if they get lost in the action. Protect your pet's well-being by keeping them enclosed somewhere while the movers are working, or ask a family member to take them on a fun outing away from the home. Cherished Companions Animal Clinic recommends making up a box of pet supplies to keep handy during the big day. Include your pet’s favorite toys, bedding, water and food bowls, a leash, cleaning products, and pet food.

4. Secure Your Pet in The Car

On the road, secure your pet with a seatbelt harness or a carrier to help them stay safe. Pets that are stressed may act out of character, showing aggression or trying to run away. Even if your pet is always well-behaved, keep them restrained while in the car. If they aren't used to being in a carrier, try acclimating them to it before the move so they know it's a safe place.

5. Set Up a Familiar Area for Them

If you’re not moving too far away and you’re able to access your new home before moving day, set up a familiar space for your pet. That way, they’ll have a comfortable area to retreat to if they get overwhelmed by the unfamiliar surroundings. You could give your dog a small room of their own, but if this isn't realistic, you can set up a corner of the laundry room or kitchen—somewhere out of the way where they can relax alone. You can even throw one of your old T-shirts into your pup's bed to comfort them with your scent.

6. Stick to Your Old Routines

Many issues with pet behavior come up when there’s a significant change to their routine. It’s normal for our own routines to get a little skewed when we move into a new place, but it’s important to keep your pet’s routine consistent. Maintain their regular feeding and exercise schedule, and let them outside to use the bathroom around the same times that you normally do.

Moving with pets can go smoothly if you take care to manage their stress. Throughout the moving process, it's important for you to stay patient and calm. Pets are very sensitive to human emotions, and can get nervous if you seem frantic or rushed. In the end, you and your pet will help each other reduce the inevitable stress of moving and keep each other company through this upheaval in your life.

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