Moving home can be stressful for your pets! So, to make the transition as calm as possible I’ve asked Olivia Parker from Atlanta Peach Mover to give us their tips on moving home with your cat…
Moving with Cats: Best Things You Can Do When Moving Your Home with a Cat
Moving to a new home can be stressful for anyone, especially the pets of your family. While you may not think it will affect them that much, your cat isn’t immune to the routine changes and overall upheaval that moving to a new home can do to their life.
For cats, in particular, moving to a new home will bring out new stressors. These stressors can be things such as strange new smells, not being fed on time, not having a familiar and usual playing/sleeping area, and having to reclaim their territory again.
While these may not seem like much to you, for them it’s a big deal. When moving to a new home with cats, it’s important to try to ease their stress as much as possible. Here are a few things you need to consider when moving a home with your feline friend.
Before the Move
Before the big move occurs there’s a few things you’ll need to complete, and these include:
- Make sure your cat’s microchip is fully up to date and is working.
- Add an updated pet tag with the correct phone numbers and new address on it.
- When packing a room, keep your pet in a less chaotic and less stressful room, such as a bedroom, laundry, or bathroom.
- To reduce the stress, try to keep meal times and the rest of your cat’s routine the same and on schedule as much as possible. This includes any cuddles and playtime.
- Consult your vet if you have an elderly pet to see whether their health will be impacted from long travel trips.
- On the morning you’re moving, try to avoid feeding your pet. Some pets will be sick when fed before traveling.
During the Move
During the move there’s a few things to consider to make the transition a good one for your pet. These include:
- Make sure you have a strong and structurally sound carrier with a locking enclosure to place your cat in.
- If your cat is meowing, talk to him to comfort him, and try to avoid opening the carrier, as they’ll be more inclined to dash out and run off.
- On hot days when you’re moving from your house, make sure you don’t leave your pet alone in your vehicle, especially with the windows wound up. Temperatures can get extremely hot and can cause your pet to overheat and die, even on average hot days.
- Unless you’re going to be on the road for more than 12 hours, try to avoid placing water or food in the carrier.
- If you know your travel in between homes is long, you’ll need to have a larger carrier to fit a litter tray. Try to get a carrier which won’t spill during the travel, and one that provides easy changing of the litter tray during the drive.
Carrier Tips for Your Cat
When getting a carrier for your cat, it’s best to get one well in advance and place it in view of your cat so they can get used to it. Over the weeks leading up to the move, place your cat within the carrier for short periods of time, to allow them to get used to it before moving day comes around. If needed, begin to feed your pet closer to the carrier to help them acclimatize to it. Before moving, place a few absorbent towels within the base of the carrier to help reduce any mess during transit.
After the Move
After you’ve moved to your new home you can start to settle your cat in by:
- Setting the cat up in one room, preferably the laundry or bathroom. Place their food, litter tray, and water in the room. Allow your cat to get used to this small space where their food source will be from now on. To help make the transition easier on your cat, place some familiar smells and items like cat toys in there as well.
- Once you find your cat has become familiar with the one room, you can then allow them to explore another room or the rest of the house slowly by leaving the door open in the laundry or bathroom. Make sure all doors to the outdoor areas are closed before doing this, however. You don’t want them to run off outside.
- After you’ve moved, refrain from letting your cat outdoors for at least 2-4 weeks. When you first let the cat out, make sure they’re supervised and the yard is fully fenced. If you’re really concerned, you could put a leash on them so they don’t dash off over the fence.
- Avoid letting your pet outdoors before dawn or after dusk to help protect wildlife and your pet’s life as well.
Other Considerations for the Move
If you don’t want to have your cat there during the moving period, there are other options. These include animal boarding businesses. These types of businesses are able to look after your pet in a friendly enclosed area for the moving period. They are generally well taken care of, and you can arrange when you’re going to pick them back up again.
Your cat will have less chance of going missing during the move, and they’ll be a lot calmer when you bring them back home.
While you may not think so, a move is stressful for your pet cat. Cats are a creature of habit, and, by disrupting their normal day, you have a higher chance of your cat going missing leading up to the move.
If you have more than one cat, it may be best to look into boarding options to help reduce the stress on yourself while moving without having to monitor all of your feline friends. Either way, we hope your move is an easy and stress free one for you and your cat.
So are you moving home soon? Do you have any cats that you have to move? What are you worried about most when moving with your cat?
About the author
Olivia is the content manager for Atlanta Peach Movers. When she’s not writing, you can find her running through Buckhead with her rescue pup, Bo.