Moving home is as stressful for pets as it is for humans. A house move can be a bit upsetting for all pets but cats can be very territorial and a house move can be very disruptive and confusing for them. However, with a little planning and careful thought, you can help the move go smoothly for all members of the family including your pet cat.
Cat safety and welfare during a house move
Start by discussing your concerns with your cross country movers see if they have any special advice on moving with pets. They will create your customized moving plan to ensure that your belongings arrive promptly and safely and you can immediately start to settle your cat into your new home.
Your priority is to ensure that your cat is not put in any danger on the day of the move. The easiest way of achieving this is to take them to a cattery for a few days whilst all the packing up and the move takes place. You will be able to collect them once all the furniture is in place in your new home and you have time to dedicate to settling them in.
If this is not possible, you need to select a room where you can safely keep your cat when the house contents are being loaded into the removal trucks. Lock the door if possible or at least place a clear sign on the door indicating that it should not be opened.
Feed the cat early in the morning of the move, when you first place them in the locked room. From then on just provide fresh water. Travelling can make a cat sick so it is better to limit food intake at this time. Provide lots of objects that will be comforting for the cat to have around them. Put in familiar bedding, water and toys and litter tray.
When it is time to move the cat, use a specially designed crate lined with a familiar blanket. This will have the cat’s scent on it and will make it feel more comfortable. Take your time and talk to the cat if you can during the journey.
Settling your cat into a new home
Once you are at your new home, select a room that you can secure your cat into. Provide food, water, bedding, toys and a litter tray. After a day or so, you can let the cat out to explore.
A cat feels comfortable when it is around familiar scents. The sooner you can get your new home covered in your cat’s scent, the sooner it will feel happy and secure.
You can do this by getting a soft cloth and stroking it gently around your cat’s face. The scent transfers easily to the cloth. Now use the cloth to wipe surfaces in your new home that are at the cat’s level. Do this for several days before you let the cat outside.
With these few easy steps, your cat will soon settle into the new house and you can start to enjoy your new life together.