Moving home: lowering the stress for your pets

Moving house is stressful enough for us humans, with packing and planning and sense of the unknown. Imagine how confusing this must be for our pets, who can’t understand why all these changes are happening.

Carefully planning your pet’s move will really help them to make the move to their new home as smoothly as possible, with less stress for you and them. Here are some simple tips you can follow:

Before the move

  • Leading up to the big day gradually move your pets' food bowls, toys and beds into one room. This will mean on moving day they should be happy to stay in one secure room for a few hours, while you pack things up.
  • Don’t feed pets close to travelling time, this could cause travel sickness. Instead, give them small amounts of their usual food throughout the day. This will give them something to do while you’re busy and will be gentler on their tummy if they are feeling anxious.
  • Using a pheromone diffuser can help your pet feel more relaxed during the move. Pheromones are natural scents that are undetectable to humans, but can help keep your pet calm.
  • Make sure your pets are microchipped and remember to let the microchip company know about your new address. If your pets run off during the move, you’re much more likely to be reunited with them if they’re microchipped.
  • If your pet is quite nervous and finds it difficult to cope with change, it may be better to book them into a kennel or cattery during the move. Check with your vet that their vaccinations are up to date and give yourself enough time to find a cattery or kennel you like and trust.

At your new home

  • When you arrive at your new home, put some of your pet’s toys and bedding into one room along with a piece of clothing that smells of you. It’ll help them feel at home.
  • Moving day will be really busy for you but do spend some time with your pet to help them settle into their new home.
  • Make sure your house is secure before letting your pet explore freely.
  • Walk your dog around the house on a lead so they can explore safely and only let them into the garden once it has been secured.
  • Cats should be kept indoors for a few weeks to help them become familiar with their new environment.