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Moving Part Deux

Tips for the Road

If you're traveling by car, keep cats/dogs in carriers large enough to accommodate food and water bowls plus a small cat litter box.  Stop about every few hours to give larger pets some fresh air and exercises and to give them some relief. Use a leash if you let your cat/dog out. Maintain a comfortable car temperature for all pets, and don't ever leave animals alone in a car on a hot day. Even with the windows cracked, this can be fatal. Birds and other small pets such as hamsters, etc.) are especially susceptible to drafts and heat.  Make sure you:

  • Check the weather at both ends, moving birds and animals in the rain is not fun be ready.
  • Veterinary records, certificates, and recent photos of your pet(s)
  • Medications
  • The usual foods and plenty of water from the home you're leaving (changing their water source can be disorienting and may upset their stomachs); for birds try to use filtered water at all times this way you can avoid chemicals and changes in water--your bird will live longer (small or large).
  • Food, treats, toys and water bowls, a can opener, and resealable lids
  • Leashes for cats and dogs
  • Paper towels
  • Bedding (pillows, towels, or other crate or carrier liners)
  • Cat litter box
  • Provisions for the first couple days at the new place

 Moving In

  • Choose a small room as the pet room, where they feel secure as you move in furniture and belongings. Have furniture, bowls, and toys before you let your pets out of their crates.
  • Don't let pets outdoors without a leash until they've adapted to their new surroundings.
  • Continue giving your pets water from home for the first few days, or filtered water.
  • If you suspect your pets to be ill, make a veterinary appointment. Don't punish your pets for initial misbehavior. Cats especially will not understand, and distrusting you will only increase stress and stress-caused behaviors.
  • Clean up "accidents" immediately, animals tend to repeat behaviors in the same areas, so remove odors as quickly as possible.
  • For birds, ensure that they're placed in a room where it has not been recently painted.
  • Take the dog on regular walks around the neighborhood to introduce him to the area.
  • For the first few days, give the cat the security of one room, including supplies. Let it explore the house/apartment at its own pace. Don't open windows more two inches unless they're screened.
  • Place litter boxes away from feeding areas, preferably on top of a replaceable throw rug.


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