I hope you enjoy these tips for moving by guest blogger, Cindy Aldridge. It’s great advice about taking care of our animals during stressful moves. My dogs, Timmie and Missy moved with me three times when I was in the Navy. I found them in Hawaii, flew them to upstate New York, then to San Francisco and finally drove them to Washington, D.C. That drive included my husband, 2 kids, and sister!

In addition to Cindy’s great advice, now that I’m an animal communicator, I would add that we can explain the move and how it’s going to turn out just fine. In fact, I did that for a cat during Meow DC who was in transition to his new home. Animal Communication really helps our animals chill out and get acclimated faster.


Cats and dogs love routines and consistency

When their surroundings change, however, they feel uneasy. And since our pets are sensitive to our own emotions and behaviors, a stressful period in your life can create anxiety for your furry friend as well. So, it goes without saying that moving can be hard on our pets. As you search for a house, pack up your belongings, and get settled into your new place, be mindful of your pet’s needs and do everything you can to keep them comfortable and stress-free.


1 –  Find a Pet-Friendly Home


House-hunting with your pet in mind will help you find a home where your cat or dog can thrive. You can make nearly any home cat-friendly by adding a few features of your own. Create vertical space for them with a cat tree or wall-mounted cat shelves — this is a great way to maximize the floor space of your home. To help your cat relieve stress after the move, pick up a scratching post and some new toys. These new items may help distract your cat from feelings of unease. Plastic balls, rings, and plush toys are great for relieving feline stress!  Before shopping, make sure you check out cat product reviews on sites like Cat Life Today.

2 – Look for Pet-Friendly Features


If you have a dog, keep an eye out for dog-friendly features during your housing search — open floor plans, secure yards, and nearby parks are ideal. Make sure the yard is free from water hazards and poisonous plants. Other dogs in the neighborhood are always a good sign!


Although cats are a little more independent, avoid neglecting their needs when looking for a home. If you have a cat that roams around outside, look for traffic-calmed neighborhoods where cars drive slowly. Also, check that the windows on the second floor of the house are secure to prevent your cat from falling out. Preventive Vet recommends testing the window screens by pressing your hand firmly against them.


3 – Prepare Your Pet for Moving Day


Moving day can get pretty hectic. Don’t let your beloved pet get lost or hurt in the mayhem. If possible, leave your dog or cat with someone you know for the day. You could also board your pet with a kennel or veterinarian. If you want to keep your pet at home, confine them to a quiet room and keep the door locked. Remember to provide water, toys, and their bedding to keep your pet comfortable! For dogs, Dogtopia recommends maintaining their regular feeding and walking routine. Keeping your pets safe will help you focus on the move instead of worrying about them.


4 – Keep Your Pet Safe in the Car


Whether you’re moving near or far, get a quality pet carrier to keep your animal safe in the car. It’s dangerous to allow cats or dogs free rein of the car while you’re driving. For dogs that aren’t used to carriers, a seat belt harness is a safe alternative. If you’re going to be driving for a long time, pack a road trip bag for your pet. Include portioned food, water, treats, and clean-up supplies in case they have an accident in the car. You could even put some catnip in your cat’s carrier to keep them happy during the move!


5 – Pack a First-Day Box


Remember to pack a first-night box for your pet, especially if your moving boxes will not be arriving at the new home right away. Unpack your pet’s old things as soon as you arrive — this will give your animal a comforting sense of familiarity. This is also a great time to break out new toys to ease your pet’s transition and keep them occupied while you unpack. For both dogs and cats, let them explore your new home at their own pace.


Remember that your dog will respond to your stress, so take care of yourself while you maneuver through the moving process. Take plenty of breaks to play with your cat or walk your dog. Giving your pet lots of attention is a great way to strengthen your bond while you’re both facing the demands of moving.


Cindy Aldridge’s two golden retrievers have been by her side through it all including traveling, house hunting, and moving. She knows from experience that dogs add a unique piece to any life situation, and she hopes her insight and tips will help other dog people and their furry companions experience the adventures and excitement of life together.  Cindy is the creator of OurDogFriends.org, a website advocating for the love and guardianship of dogs.  


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