Moving into a new home can be equally exciting and disruptive—not just for you and your family but for your animals as well. Since pets are creatures of habit, changing the environment can cause anxiety. Here are four ways to make the transition to the new setting easier. Restrict Access In the beginning, limit access to certain rooms so that it isn’t so overwhelming. Take your pets on a tour of the available rooms and let them roll around to incorporate their own scent. Make it Familiar There may be a temptation to buy new things for the new space. However, it’s best to incorporate recognizable scents. Keep their bed, toys, cat tree, blanket, or other favorite items around. It can also help if you stay home as much as possible the first few days to make them feel more comfortable. Don’t Mess with Routines This isn’t the time to stop letting them sleep on the bed or change the type of food they eat. The key is to create consistency and stability. If your dog is used to walks at six in the morning and again at five, stick to it. The same goes for feeding time. Have Patience During the orientation period there may be bathroom accidents, excessive barking, or frequent hiding. Give your pets space and time to get acclimated. If needed, contact a veterinarian for additional coping strategies. Need a recommendation for a vet in the area? Check with your REALTOR®.
Moving is stressful—and not just for humans. Not only can animals sense your anxiety, they also dislike unpredictability. Here are suggestions to help your beloved companions have a smoother experience: Have a Travel Plan Coordinate how you will transport your pets ahead of time and give them a chance to get acclimated to the travel crate or carrier. Have treats, bathroom supplies, and a leash or harness ready for the trip. Also, reach out to your vet if you think they will need calming medication. Reduce Food Intake Prevent car sickness by not feeding your pet right before traveling. Instead, either feed them a few hours before or wait until you have reached your destination. Separate Your Pets from the Chaos Board your pets or put them into a closed room while your stuff is being moved out or into the new home. Keeping them confined will also protect them from accidentally getting out of the house. Reestablish Routine Ensure there are smells they recognize in the new home, so that your pets don’t feel completely out of place. For example, have their toys, favorite blanket, food, crate, or litter box nearby. Also, take your dog on walks with a leash around the neighborhood, and let your cats slowly explore the house to help them adapt to their new surroundings. And don’t forget, whether it’s finding a new vet, animal daycare, or different dog parks in the area, your REALTOR® can be an excellent resource.