By Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group
Moving your household
is a rough process, and it only gets more difficult if you have four-legged family members who are moving with you to Houston. If you own canines, cats, or both, then here are a few, basic tasks you can do to make the moving process easier on them, and on yourself to Houston.
Tip #1: Have One, Final Vet Visit
Some pets don't enjoy going to the vet, but if you are relocating it is crucial to be sure your animals get one, final checkup. This is super vital if you're moving far enough away that you will need to get a new vet, or if an airplane is going to be involved. Make certain you get proof of vaccinations, prescriptions, and any other paperwork you are going to require. If you delay until you are far away from your vet to accomplish this, it can be a large, unnecessary stressor to add on top of your move.
Tip #2: Board Your Pets (If You Can)
Boarding can be rough on animals who have separation anxiety, but it is lots of times a feasible answer in the long-run if you are moving to a new residence. If you board your animals for loading day and unloading day then you do not have to be anxious about them being bothersome, there's not a chance of them running out of the yard, and you aren't constantly keeping track of them. It saves time, frustration, and risk, which can help your move go a lot more smoothly.
Tip #3: Preserve as Much Routine as Possible
Our pets appreciate routine, and they are sensitive to when it isn’t what they expect. Changes in routine might be a danger, so it has a tendency to result in all kinds of extra worry on their part. Therefore, you should attempt to organize your move to Houston so that it disrupts your animals’ routines (as well as your own) as little as possible. Allow them to get acclimated to what's taking place a little at a time, and they will respond much better. Also, when you move them, be sure you bring their belongings with them when you can. Favorite toys and bedding can act like a security blanket, and help your pets be calmer throughout the process.
Tip #4: Make Sure Your Pets Are Comfortable With Their Traveling Accommodations
Regardless if you have dogs or cats, you don't want to gather them up, throw them in the car, and start driving one day. You should allow the time to get your pets used to traveling. For example, if you have a feline, place their carrying case on the floor with the door open. Let them get familiarized with it being there, and give them an opportunity to explore it. If you have a dog, get them accustomed to a crate, or a kennel. Take them on progressively longer car trips, and get them used to being passengers if possible. The more care you can take getting your pets on-board with moving (even if they're not ever really going to like it), the simpler things are going to be.
Tip #5: Identification
Be certain and keep identification on your pet always. If something terrible happens and your pet is lost in the craziness of the move, how else will they find their way back to you? Make sure that their collar is sized correctly and that their tag includes a phone number that won’t be disconnected during the move.
Tip #6: Chill Out... Your Pets Are Watching
Moving is stressful, there is no doubt about that. Even if everything goes without a hitch (which it rarely does), you're going to have times where you just want to lay on the floor and throw a good, old-fashioned tantrum. No matter how crazy everything gets, though, it's vital for you to not forget that little eyes are watching you, and that you may be startling them.
Your pets are likely under a lot of stress from the whole move. New stuff is appearing without explanation, familiar things are going away, and there are strangers arriving all the time. So, take a moment, take a breath, and remember that your pets need you to be collected and reassuring for them. Otherwise it might tip them over the edge of the stress meter.