We’re all familiar with how stressful a move can be for us humans, not only is it a lot of hard work and planning, we’re also being cut off from a society and a circle of friends that we’re familiar with. Interestingly, animals can get stressed too, but for different reasons. Cats and dogs, being territorial creatures are ones who are most affected by this. These tips aren’t mutually exclusive to a Battersea move, but is there a better place for an animal lover to move than the site of the most dedicated animal rescue centre?
Give it the attention it deserves
Of course, you’d be giving it the attention anyway, being a responsible pet owner, but it’s very important on the days leading up to the move. You need to make your pet feel loved, and that you’re not going to leave them behind. Treat it to extra long walks, more treats and chews, whatever it’s favourite activity is. Carry on this trend for a week or so after the move too, to help with the settling process.
Keep them out of the way when you’re packing
This is important to bear in mind for two reasons. One, it’s dangerous doing the heavy lifting and furniture disassembly with a furry rascal walking around your legs – you could trip, and seriously hurt either of you. And two, keeping them out of the room helps to avoid animal anxiety. I’m not suggesting that you leave your friend in a room all alone, by any means, just give them a diversion. Maybe another member of family could take it for a walk, or you could send them to the pet groomer or vet for the afternoon.
Keep the journey as un-stressful as possible
Of course, this is good advice in general, no one wants to be stuck in the back of a car in a traffic jam, or down a back road in a strange town because the driver took a long turn. Take a road atlas with you, or check Google Maps before you leave. If your pet doesn’t like car journeys in general, consider getting a sedative injection from your vet beforehand – not a strong knock out one, just a calming one. Your vet should know what to do. Take some snacks as well, not just for the kids, but for the pets too!
Take steps to make the new place seem familiar
There’s plenty of ways to do this, the easiest way is to simply pack your pets bed and favourite toys. Pack it in a separate container, to keep the smell off your other goods and you should be ready to go. Your little kitten or pup will at least have a small place to call its own for a while, if they’re the shy type. If they’re not the shy type, give them free reign of the house, so they can explore and get to know the place at their own pace. I’m not just talking about the inside too, take them for outside walks as soon as possible, so they can get a feel for the new place.
Every pet has their own personality, another trait that they share with us, so one dog or cat may react differently to these calming techniques than any other dog or cat. Treat these tips as rough guidelines, that you can adjust accordingly according to how your furred companion reacts. Though that being said, if you pay the right amount of attention to them, they should thank you for it. If not, you can ask your new vet for guidance.