11 Tips to Make Moving with Pets Easier

11 Tips to Make Moving with Pets Easier

You have your packing list, you’ve booked your movers and forwarded your mail… But do you also have a plan in place for your pets, or are you still unsure?  Just like when moving with kids, moving with pets takes some extra planning to make sure things go smoothly.

You know how much you care for your pets if you are a pet owner. Don’t forget to include these family members in your moving plans! Moving is more than just another cost of selling a home. It is a major disruption for our furry family members. They are used to routines and find comfort in them. There are several things you can do to make sure your pet has the best possible experience when moving.

A well-planned move will make the transition easier for you and your family.

Start your pet off with packing materials and boxes

Pets love to play around with packing materials. Who doesn’t like the endless amusement of a rippable piece of tissue paper or an empty box? Start packing early to help your pets become accustomed to boxes.

Start stockpiling boxes several weeks in advance if you have the space. Leave the boxes open and place less frequently used items inside. At first, your pets may be curious about the boxes. But soon, they will not look at them again.

As you approach moving day, and the packing process begins, conditioning your pet ahead of time can help reduce box attacks and disruptions.

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Reduce stress for your pet by not changing your daily routine

Animals, especially dogs and cats, are creatures of habit. Your pet’s anxiety will increase the more you change your schedule.

If you are in a hurry to pack or organize your list it can be tempting to ignore your pet’s daily routines. However, the little disruption will make your pet happier over time.

Keep your pet calm in the weeks before moving and on the day of moving if possible. Make sure to do the following.

  • Feeding them at the usual times
  • Don’t skip your regular playtime or walks
  • They are also stressed

Keep your pets entertained

While you will be busy moving, it is important to make time to exercise and entertain your pets. Burning off that nervous energy is one of the best ways to reduce stress. A calm, tired pet will help make the move easier for you and your family.

Ask a friend to help you out and bring your dog for a few outdoor play dates if things are too hectic to squeeze in an extra walk. You can also use dog walking services to give your pup some time and exercise away from the chaos of your household. Find a dog walker near you by using an app such as Wag or Rover .

Use brain games to keep your pet entertained. You will have more time to do other things, as they will not be bored.

Keep your pet in a quiet, comfortable space

Moving can turn your home from a tidy, organized place into a mess. Even though some mess will be inevitable, it is important to keep at least one area clear and comfortable during the move for your pet.

It’s important to have a place where they can go when chaos overwhelms them, especially for pets.

Sometimes it’s not possible to find someone who can take care of your pet while you move. Prioritize getting your pet’s room ready when you get to your new home if your pets will be with you. You can place their cage or crate away from the noise and chaos of moving, but close enough to hear you. This way they don’t feel abandoned in their new home.

You may want to consider putting your dogs and cats into a room that has a door you can close during the move-out and move-in process. This is because it’s likely that your front door will be left open as you move everything inside. You don’t want to have to chase an escapee during a day that is already tiring.

Contact your veterinarian

The vets are very knowledgeable about how to help pets deal with stressful situations, especially because most animals don’t like their visits. You can ask them questions regarding reducing anxiety in your pet.

Book a vet visit a few months before your move to ensure that you are able to do the following things:

  • Check that all vaccinations have been updated and, if necessary, obtain a current certificate of rabies immunization.
  • Keep your pet healthy and stock up on regular prescriptions to reduce the likelihood of an emergency.
  • Discuss possible stress-reduction techniques or supplements that can help reduce anxiety.
  • If you’re moving out of the area or city where your pet is currently living and need to change vets, request a copy.
  • If you are new to your community and have not yet found a vet, ask your vet for recommendations.
  • If you are moving to another state, ask about any additional vaccinations or tests.

If you are moving to a different city, be sure to check the new laws regarding pets

If you’re moving to a new town, don’t be surprised by leash laws and pet laws. You should do your research in advance so that you are prepared. The real estate agent you hired should be able to help with this also.  It’s crucial to understand the requirements of your lease if you are moving into a new rental apartment or home. You don’t want to be refused entry because you have a pet.

Before you move, it is a great idea to get new pet tags. Don’t forget to update your pet’s information online if it is microchipped.

Plan pet-friendly accommodation if you are moving across the state

Make sure that your pet is welcome at the accommodations you choose. Booking websites allow you to narrow down your search by only including pet-friendly accommodations, but not all pets are welcome.

pet in crate

Keep your pet close and secure

Doors will be open and people will come and go during the moving process. Your pet should be kept safe so that they do not run away from you out of fear or confusion. Put them in a kennel or a closed room in a quiet area of your home.

Don’t leave your dog alone in the backyard while you are moving into your new house! Keep a recent photo of your dog and update tags/microchips in case it escapes.

Prepare a separate moving bag for your pets

Pack and have all the pet necessities on hand to reduce stress for you and your pet. Start with water bowls, blankets, toys, food, treats and kitty litter.

Never forget to keep a roll or two of paper towels on hand and a few disposable plastic bags for unexpected cleaning!

Prepare your pet to travel safely in your car

Your pet will be safer in a crate, or carrier on the backseat. Seat belts should be fastened securely in the event of an accident. Also, make sure there are no boxes or loose items that can fall on your pet. If you believe it will reduce your pet’s anxiety, place a blanket on their crate or carrier.

Remember that this is not the first time you have placed your pet in a crate. It is important to familiarize your pet with the crate or carrier before traveling. This will ensure that it’s a comfortable and safe space. Take them on some test drives so that they are not scared of the car.

pet safe home

Before your pet arrives, make sure your home is pet-proof

Your pet may be exposed to unexpected dangers in a new environment. Use these tips to ensure your pet’s safety in their new space:

  • All screens, windows, gates and doors should be secured
  • If you have a balcony make sure your pet can’t squeeze through the railing or jump over it
  • Search outdoor fences to find possible escape routes
  • All vents should be covered
  • Close the toilet lid so that small animals cannot fall into it and dogs can’t drink water that contains chemicals
  • Look for pesticides and poisons that might have been left behind.
  • Check your backyard for any plants which may be harmful to your pet
  • Look beyond the obvious! You can hurt your pet with mothballs and firestarter sticks.

Remember that dogs will chew when they are anxious. Provide them with a variety of chew toys to prevent them from chewing on unsavory items (like your shoes or electrical cords).

Keep your home clean and clutter free to minimize the chance that your pet could get into something harmful.


Selling your home and moving to a new house is stressful enough, make sure to make the move on your pets as easy as possible.  You want to make sure to keep your pets entertained, and as stress free as possible.  Hope the above tips can provide some help in making the move with pets a bit easier for you.