How to Make Moving as Stress Free as Possible for Your Pet

Moving can feel overwhelming to members of your family, but you may not realize how the controlled chaos is affecting your pet. Here are some tips to help your pet cope with the changes.

Comfort Your Pet While You’re Packing

Let your pet get used to boxes and other packing materials before you actually start the packing process. An animal can pick up on your emotional state and will react accordingly. While you’re packing, talk to your pet in a cheerful voice so it doesn’t get stressed out. If you feel frustrated, anxious or overwhelmed, take a break to unwind. Be sure to pet and play with the animal from time to time during the packing process.

Make Your Pet Feel Safe

Animals feel safe when they know what to expect. Keep your pet’s routine as consistent as possible, both before and after the move. Obviously, there will be some disruptions, but the more you can keep things the same, the smoother the transition will be.

On moving day, put your pet in a safe place. If you’re moving locally, ask a friend or family member to take care of your pet so you can get settled a bit before you bring them into the new house. If you’re moving a long distance, you will have to transport your pet with you. Make sure that the place where the animal will be staying or the carrier or crate that they will be transported in is familiar before the day of the move to avoid creating additional stress.

Bring along essentials, such as food and water bowls, bags for waste and any medications your pet needs. Give your pet some objects that make them feel safe, such as a blanket, toys and treats, and speak to them in a calm and reassuring voice

Help Your Pet Settle Into Their New Home

When you get to the new house, set up a safe, relatively quiet place for your pet right away. That may mean putting their bed in a quiet room or putting the animal in the laundry room with the door shut while you begin unpacking.

Let your pet adjust to the new house gradually. Depending on their personality, it may be a good idea to walk through the house and explore together, or it may be better to allow your pet to venture out on their own and retreat to a safe space if they feel overwhelmed.

If you have a dog, take it for walks around the neighborhood so they can get used to the new sights, sounds and people. Pay attention to their reactions and demeanor and return home if they seem frightened or stressed.

Anticipate and Respond to Your Pet’s Needs

Animals can be frightened by change. Do as much as you can to comfort your pet before and after moving day. Pay attention to how your pet is responding and make adjustments as needed to help them cope.

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