- Consider what the neighborhood is like where you're moving. You'll want to be in a pet-positive community that isn't too traffic-filled. If you're moving into an apartment, condo, or townhouse, be sure dogs and cats are allowed.
- Scope out local veterinarians, dog parks, pet stores, and grooming salons in the area you're moving to so you have an idea of where these facilities are located.
- Learn about any local ordinances in your new town by checking with the city or county clerk's office. This will help you learn about limits on the number of pets per household, zoning laws, leash laws, and licensing rules.
- Make sure both your cats and dogs are comfortable with a crate. Try leaving the door of their crate open and putting food, treats, or toys inside in the weeks and days leading up to the move so they have a positive association with the crate.
- If your pets aren't used to riding in the car, try taking them for a few short trips that gradually lengthen over time to get them accustomed to being in a moving vehicle.
- Visit your current veterinarian for a final checkup, any needed vaccinations, and obtain all health records and prescription medications.
- During the packing process, try to keep your pets routine as normal as possible. Introduce boxes and moving supplies slowly and with regard to how your pets will react.
- Prepare a first aid kit equipped with gauze, adhesive tape, bandages, and peroxide. Keep an emergency veterinarian line phone number programmed into your phone, too.
During The Move
- Keep your pets in another room, at a friends house, or at a local kennel during the moving process so they don't escape while things are being carried in and out of your home.
- If you keep your pets home with you, make sure to tell all movers to be aware of your pets and which room they are in so they don't escape.
- Try to keep your pets' routine as normal as possible to avoid too much stress.
- Keep your pets' food, water, and medication on hand during the drive or flight.
- While moving into your new home, look for any cords, wires, food, poisonous plants, or garbage your pet could be harmed by and move or remove it before allowing your pet in the home.
- Keep your dog or cat secure at all times, either on a leash or in a crate.
- Be sure to give your pets attention and love during this time! They will be able to sense if you're distracted or stressed out and may take on that stress.
- Slowly introduce your pets to their new surroundings, one room at a time. Make sure your cat knows where its litter box is located, your dog knows where the door is to go outside, and that both cats and dogs know where their food and water dishes are located.
- Pay a visit to your new veterinarian for a checkup and bring a copy of your pet's health records.
- If your cat or dog has a microchip, make sure to update their location information.
- If your cat or dog has an ID tag, make sure to have a new one made with any updated information.
- Introduce your dog to neighbors to gauge whether or not they are uncomfortable around dogs.
- Introduce your dog to the neighborhood by going on a walk so he or she can become accustomed to their new surroundings.
- Visit local pet stores, grooming facilities, and dog parks to meet other pet owners.
- Treat your dog or cat with lots of love, walks, playtime, and treats for a job well done during the move!