One of the most stressful changes for people is moving, and for animals, it is no different. According to statistics published by the Humane Society of the United States, 79.7 million households have at least one pet. This is a survival guide for some of the most common stress-induced issues furry family members may face during a move.
According to the vets at Pet MD, dogs generally tend to internalize their emotional pain, and stress reactions usually manifest in tummy troubles and/or a decrease in appetite. They may also become isolated and sleep more than usual.
To help relieve some of the stress associated with an impending move, Jodi Frediani, wrote in her article that the key to managing a dog in a stressful situation is balance and understanding. If you need to make changes that affect your pet, like doing doggie daycare to allow more home showing flexibility, you should try to ease them into the transition, by maybe doing a few hours a day until the dog can acclimate. At the same time, keep everything else as close to the same as possible, like feeding times, brand of food, and the amount of time you spend together.
Felines Felines are nothing like dogs. If they ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy. Cats have a harder time with stress and change than the average dog. Loud noise from workers preparing the home for market, strange people walking through the home and being confined to certain areas of the house are all stressors and could be the first sign of impending kitty apocalypse.
Pam Johnson-Bennett, a cat behaviorist, said that when getting ready to move with your feline family members, try to take household changes slowly. Repainting, new carpet installation, moving a litter box, and a busy open house all within the same week is just too much for most cats to process at once. Limit your changes to things that are absolutely necessary, and during this period do not change brands of food, litter, or the location of food, water, or litter boxes. Make sure kitty has a safe place to hide, and do not remove scratching posts or cat towers if your cat regularly uses them.
Pocket pets One out of every 25 households has some form of “pocket pet,” the term used to classify small furry creatures like chinchillas, ferrets, sugar gliders, and rabbits. These little guys can also get stressed out from changes in their environment. When going through a move, sometimes our pets may get less attention due to the new demands on our time. Even though a pocket pet may not need to be walked, a lack of attention to cleaning their habitat or handling them can stress their immune systems. Daily handling can catch a small problem before it gets out of hand.
Moving can be stressful to our pets, but taking some of the above precautions will help everyone have a safe and comfortable move into your new home.