Moving home is one of the most stressful things we go through in life, it’s well known that the amount of stress is pretty equal to life events such as divorce. Of course, a move becomes that little bit more stressful if there are children and pets involved, especially cats! Cats are creatures which absolutely love familiarity and routine – and a move affects both of these key comforts.
At Richardson Moving & Storage, we have carried out plenty of moves where there is a cat travelling with the family, so now know exactly what to look out for, and what actions work to minimise the stress a move has on a cat, as well as helping the cat adjust to it’s new home in the quickest possible time frame.
On Move Day
Many cat owners choose to put their feline friends into a cattery for a couple of days, until the move is complete – others however choose to move their cat in the same day as they move. There is no right or wrong answer here, and the choice of whether to put the cat into a cattery is simply personal preference.
For those moving with their cat, we always recommend designating a dedicated room for the cat to stay in, in both new and old properties. This secure room should have familiar items, such as baskets, beds and scratching poles in it – and it’s always a good idea to put a sign on the door, so removal teams know to keep the room secure.
Transporting Your Cat
Unlike dogs, cats are not massively used to being transported. It’s essential that your cat is transported in a safe cat carrier, which is secured. Make sure the car remains cool, and the cat has access to shade. Avoid feeding the cat just before you travel, to avoid travel sickness.
Once you are settled in
Once you have everything moved and in some sort of order, you can let the cat out of the room to explore it’s new surroundings. Your cat will very quickly get used to the new space, whilst rubbing their scent on furniture, walls, doors, bodies and well…everything!
During this time, feed your cat small meals, on a regular basis to maximise bonding. Feliway products can also be very calming in this situation, and have been designed to minimise the stress of cats in new and strange environments.
When to let the cat outside
Wait at least two weeks until you let your cat outside for the first time, cats are generally very cautious of new environments – so make sure you are around, the first time they are let out. It’s always a good idea to spread some used cat litter around the perimeter of your garden – helping your cat feel familiar. Of course, make sure that your cat has identification on a collar – so if it does get lost, it can be quickly returned.
If you have any tips about moving home with a cat, just comment and let us know!