Are you about to move house? This means a lot of changes for you – from the small things such as not being able to grab pans from the cupboard you are used to them being in, to the bigger things including potentially having to get used to living in a brand new area.
If you think it’s going to take a while for you to adjust then, you need to consider your pets, who don’t know what is going on and why they are no longer in the home – and space – that they have grown used to.
So, here are a few tips to help your pet adjust:
Tip 1: Pack the Essentials Separately
When you move, you pack yourself a separate bag with the essentials such as the kettle because the last thing you want is to be searching through boxes when you are gasping for a cup of tea. So, do the same for you dog or cat. Make sure the bag includes their favourite toy and a few treats as well as their bed, food and water bowl. You have them as you leave the old house and then as soon as you enter the new house.
Tip 2: Set up their things First
One of the first things you should do is to set up your pet’s things. Put their bed out – if you plan to buy a new dog bed, for example, do this at least a few weeks before the move. They’ll find comfort in the familiarity of this and it is somewhere for them to go if they are feeling anxious as boxes are moved in and out. Animals should always have access to fresh water – so you can set this up alongside their food bowl in the kitchen. Then those treats and toys will keep them happy and occupied.
Tip 3: Keep their Routine the Same
Dogs, in particular, are creatures of habit and thrive on routine. This is why a move – and therefore a change to that – can be so stressful for them. As much as you can, try to keep their routine the same. Make sure they eat at the same time they usually would and go out on a walk when they normally would. This will help to make everything else a little easier and a little less scary for them. If you have a cat, do this as much as you can but you should keep them inside for around two weeks, then take them in the garden and let them start to explore.
Tip 4: Avoid Going Out too Much
Try not to go out and leave your pet on their own for the first few days – at least. It may be best for them to stay with a friend or relative while you are moving everything in and having to pop in and out. Then, while you are unpacking and organising your new home you’ll be around all day, so both of you can settle into your new space together. They’ll then know that this is their home and be comfortable with you leaving them again – but do try to build this up gradually.
Tip 5: Give them Lots of Love
Remember, your pet is going to need a little extra attention – this is a very unsettling time for them. You no doubt have a lot to do but make sure you spend plenty of time with them to help them relax into their new home. Take the weight off your feet for a few minutes and have a snuggle every now and again or play with them for a while. You’ll appreciate the break from unpacking and they’ll be grateful for the attention.
Now you know how to settle your pet into your new home – you can look forward to it, knowing that it shouldn’t take too long for them to feel safe and comfortable.