Most of us know our pets are sensitive beyond our human realization.
Their hearing and sense of smell can seem otherworldly, so it should be no surprise that cats and dogs, in particular, pick up on vibes their owners don’t realize are being telegraphed.
Throw in a huge upheavel such as moving to a new custom Florida home, and Fido and Fluffy can freak out just like humans. All the clatter, banging and raised voices tell them something’s going on. And if this has been the norm for several days or weeks before the moving van arrives, you might find yourself dealing with a furry stress ball on top of everything else.
You don’t need that. Here are our tips on how to help Fido feel a part of the moving process.
Planning ahead helps Fido too
We’re focusing on dogs here, but many of these tips also apply to cats. So if you have a Fluffy instead of a Fido, don’t close your browser yet!
It’s crucial to micro-plan a move to a new home. All the calendar-juggling, appointment-making and list-checking helps you and other members of your household hit your deadlines for decluttering, packing and departing.
Include Fido when you make those plans. Where will he hang out while movers load the van? How will he travel to his new home? In a crate on a plane? The backseat of the family vehicle?
Back up a few days or weeks. Dogs and cats who sense something big coming may require more reassurance or quality time from you during the packing process. Don’t ignore them.
A little planning prevents last-minute panic and snafus, and makes moving easier on your pet.
Not every dog is a chill dog
Is yours a laidback playmate who likes to meet people? That’ll come in handy when you move.
The retriever who’ll romp for a few minutes with the moving-van folks, probably won’t be intimidated by the hours of bustle and noise to come.
But a nervous dog who needs time to warm up to strangers, might do best in a room away from the main event (with a familiar bed, food and water, and check-ins by you).
You might be peeling cats off a ceiling fan. Probably best to exile them as well.
Safety is another reason Fido and Fluffy should be under control on moving day. Pets dashing around heavy loads is a hazard for them and the movers. And what if Fido or Fluffy sprints out the door in a panic? Then you’re chasing a freaked-out pet down your soon-to-be-former street.
Get Fido settled at his or her new address
The faster Fido learns where to find his bowls, toys and bed, the faster he’ll feel at home.
Go for leashed walks around your new neighborhood. Visit the local dog park. Keeping him on his regular feeding and medication schedules is a good idea even if your own is out of whack (you’ll catch up).
Ask new neighbors for vet recommendations. It’s a good way to meet new friends.
And, don’t be surprised if Fido adapts much to his new environment more quickly than you do!
Ready for a pet-friendly move? opens in a new windowTalk to ICI Homes here.