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Moving Tips: Helping your pet relocate

Pets can be difficult to relocate.

Pets can be difficult to relocate.

If you own a cat, dog or other pet, it is important that they are comfortable with the moving process. Animals can be very skittish, especially in unknown territory. The process of getting them acclimated to a new place should start long before packing or even the move occurs.

Animals should be exposed early to both people and the outdoors. Even cats can benefit from being driven around or walked places that aren't the veterinarian. Many animals will get in the routine of going into a vehicle thinking they will only be heading to the vet, and this can make them feel both uncomfortable and nervous. However, if they are frequently exposed to things unfamiliar to their inside lives, they can benefit.

Another good item to keep in mind is the importance of the crate to a pet. Even if they don't end up using it often as they get older, a crate can work wonders when moving to a new home. The animal will likely be nervous about their new surroundings, so having the crate will act as a security blanket. If they don't recognize anything else, they will recognize their crate. Furthermore, bringing along items that they regularly use, such as toys and bowls will help the process along more quickly. If some or all of these are in one area - especially a room to themselves - they may adapt well.

Bringing the animal around the new home will help tremendously. Help the pet familiarize itself with the area by walking around with you. Don't let cats roam outside until they have time to recognize that the home belongs to them. Walking dogs around the premises for them to get a feel for the outside can aid in the process, as well.

It is important for you to not lose your typical routine with your pet, as doing exactly like you did in the old home will make them feel more comfortable. Pets, especially dogs, will look to you to make sure everything is OK. By being in command, the entire process of the moving transition can be made significantly less stressful for everyone involved. It doesn't have to be difficult, and the quicker you start, the better the animals will adjust.