There’s not much about moving that is easy. The whole process, from finding a new apartment to packing your stuff and delivering everything from point A to point B, can be a huge problem. One thing that can make this effort even more difficult? Moving with pets. Our furry friends may be just as concerned about the move as we are. Once you start collecting things, they may begin to feel insecure. In addition, relocation and acclimatization in a new place can cause a lot of anxiety and stress. Just like you need to prepare your kids for relocation, you need to do something similar with your pets. So, if you are planning a move, just make sure you spend some time thinking about how you are going to make the process a little less difficult for you and your pets.
Here are eight practical tips for moving with pets
1. Get their health records
Depending on your mode of transportation and where you are moving, you may need certain documents regarding your pet’s health. After you have determined the requirements, make an appointment with your veterinarian to put everything in order. Keep your documents in a convenient place while you are traveling, as you may be asked to submit them along the way.
Most frequently required documents:
- Evidence of rabies vaccination. The current rabies label and vaccination certificate signed by your veterinarian is your pet’s most important travel document. When moving with pets, be sure to keep this certificate at your disposal.
- Health certificate. A certificate signed by your veterinarian describing your pet, listing all vaccinations and indicating that your pet is healthy and free from infectious diseases. Health certificates are valid for a limited period of time – sometimes as little as 10 days. Make sure your pet arrives at its destination before its certificate expires.
2. Update their tags and chips
Even before you take the first box, you must make sure that your pet’s collars tags are updated with your current cell number. What for? When moving, it happens many times that your little guys can run away. And if they are scared (how can they not be if you move large objects or make a lot of noise), that is much more likely.
Updated tags ensure that if they run away, someone will know who to call. Especially if you are moving long-distance, so there are no familiar neighbors to bring them back. You should also think about microchipping. If you took your animals from a shelter, they probably already have these chips. But if not, then microchips are another good security measure. Any veterinarian and many other pet specialists can scan the microchip to find information about the pet owner.
3. Get them accustomed to the carrier or crate in advance
If you move with cats or small dogs, they must be in a carrier or crate when you move them from one apartment to another. This can create a problem if your pets do not have experience with these things. To ease their fear, take the carriers or crates long before the move, to give them time to smell them and make sure they feel safe. You can even fill them with their favorite toys, treats, and one of your T-shirts (your animals will find comfort in your scent).
4. Make a transport plan
That can be a big problem when moving with pets. Your Florida movers will most likely not be able to transport them. So you need another way to transport them to a new place. If you do not have a car, you can see if you can borrow it from a friend. If not, you may have to take them in a taxi. In any case, your pets can develop motion sickness. See if your vet can give you any medications to give them just in case. And try not to give them too much food on the morning of the move.
5. Or consider other options for the day of the move
Alternatively, you can make other plans for your pets so that they are not at all part of the madness of the move. See if they can stay with a friend or neighbor the night before the move. Just until all your boxes and furniture are moved to a new place.
This is a great idea for a number of reasons. On the one hand, it is a less stressful option for animals. And, on the other hand, the likelihood that one of them will run away while your movers are taking out your sofa through the front door is much less. Removing them completely from a picture can make everyone stress-free.
6. Pack the pet box
Just as you need to have some important things with you — medicines, toiletries, a coffee maker, etc. — you need to make sure that you have some important things for pets in an easily accessible box. Keep at least a couple of days of food there, as well as toys, beds, extra litter for kittens. And everything else your pet will need right away when you get to the new place.
7. Keep everyone locked up
If your pets are staying with you on the day of the move, do not forget to put them in one room, both in the old apartment and in the new one. Mark it with a sign so that your residential movers (or friends who help you move) don’t open the door. If your pets are not limited, they can easily run away or get under someone’s feet, which will not be safe for everyone involved in the move. This room will be the house of your pets in a new apartment. Fill it with food, water and everything they like.
8. Stick to the routine
Finally, as much as possible, it is important to adhere to the typical daily routine of your pets. Of course, the moving day is hectic, so this may not be possible. But if you can feed and walk them by the schedule, to which your pets have become accustomed, this will greatly facilitate moving with pets.