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Moving home with your pet

If you’re moving house you’ll be excited to start making it feel like home, but here at Co-op Insurance we know it can also be a stressful and difficult time for you and your pet. You may be worried how your pet will cope in new surroundings, as well as settle into their new home. That’s why we’ve put together a few tips for our members that may help you successfully move home with your dog or cat with minimum stress.

Moving day

There will be a lot of activity on moving day and you may consider putting your pet in boarding kennels or a cattery during the move. If this is not possible then;

  • place your pet in one room of the house with doors and windows closed
  • give them familiar belongings such as toys and blankets
  • feed as normal to maintain some sort of routine (but not too close to moving in case of illness).

Settling into your new home

Again, there will be a lot of activity at the new house so you’ll want to make sure they feel safe and secure.

  • keep your pet safe and secure until at least one room of the house is sorted. To maintain some familiarity, leave some belongings like favourite toys, blankets or a jumper that smells like you so they feel close to you
  • once the house is organised, let your pet explore its new surroundings, keep this to one or two rooms so they are not overwhelmed
  • there will be unfamiliar smells in your new home which may unsettle your pet. To help them settle, softly rub a small cloth around your pet’s face to pick up their personal scent. Use this cloth to dab around rooms where your pet will have access to, repeat this daily to build up your pet’s scent around the home
  • use food and regular routine. Small frequent meals will give you more contact and help reassure your pet that all is ok.

Going outside

  • once you’re settled, take your dog out for a walk to explore the surrounding areas
  • for the first few days, make sure your dog is exercised on a lead until confidence is built up
  • cats may try to return to their old home. To prevent this happening , keep them inside for a couple of weeks to let them bond with the new home, get used to their new territory and learn new smells
  • when it’s time to go outside, try not to feed them for approximately 12 hours so they’re hungry and look for signs for feeding – this will encourage them to come back into the home
  • go out for short periods of time and accompany your cat as they explore their outside space. They will relax if they know you’re there, plus you can keep an eye on them. Let them explore a little and then call them in for food. Repeat this a number of times, extending the time and going a little further each time.

Don’t forget to update your contact details, including collar tags, microchips, pet insurance and registering with a new vet if required.