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Pre-Moving Day Tips for Pet Owners

May 7, 2012

Moving creates a lot of anxiety for pets, especially older pets, most cats and skittish pets. That’s why it’s important to do your homework and be prepared. Here are some pre-moving tips for pets that will make your move a smoother transition.

Many subdivisions in the St. Louis area and across the state have various ordinances and pet licensing requirements. Be sure you are familiar with these before you move in. You can familiarize yourself with your new home’s state/province laws by contacting the State Department of Agriculture or the State Veterinarian’s Office. In fact, depending on your new address, your pet may need additional medications, vaccinations or health certificates.
If your pet doesn’t like to travel, be sure to get your vet’s recommendations for behavior modification tactics or medication that can lessen the stress of travel. Your current vet may also be a valuable resource for lining up your pet’s vet in your new home town.

packingAs soon as you know your home’s new address you should order a new pet ID tag. Be sure to include your pet’s name, your name, address and phone number. An up-to-date ID tag is the best way to have a lost pet return home.

For your pet’s sake you should maintain your normal routine as long as possible. Many homeowners do their packing gradually over a period of time. But this causes commotion and disrupts your pet’s habits and routine. Moving is typically crazy and hectic and it’s important you remain as calm as possible. Pets can feel your stress. It’s up to you to maintain a sense of calm.

Before moving day, you should have a plan for keeping your pet safe in your vehicle. This is a crucial part of pet travel often taken for granted. Unfortunately, hundreds of pets are injured and killed every year, especially given free rein in cars, trucks, RVs and SUVs. And drivers are at risk too as they are distracted by their “enthusiastic” pet while driving, resulting in thousands of accidents every year. This is why wise pet owners are using pet barriers, pet seat belts, car seats and travel crates, keeping their pets and them safe during travel. Do yourself and your pet a favor and familiarize your pet with the vehicle restraint several weeks before your move. If you are traveling by plane, be sure to purchase and familiarize your pet with the appropriate airline approved pet carrier.

If you are staying overnight in a hotel on your way to your new home, check the hotel’s pet policy ahead of time. You’ll be glad you booked a pet friendly hotel in advance. Don’t forget to keep leashes, pet food and pet dishes nearby for those inevitable pit stops along the way. Like you, your pet will need to eat and bathroom breaks.

Moving into a new home is stressful for pets and their owners. But with some preparation, you and your pet will have an easier transition into your new home.

"By being open and recognizing our strengths and weaknesses, we can see opportunities for growth and ways to help each other."

- Jayson Hardie on Growth

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