For those who know me, or have stalked my Facebook recently, it’s not hard to see I am pretty much obsessed with my two pugs. Yes, one of them even had a birthday party last week.
The obsession is clearly evident! But I know I’m not alone.
There are many other pet crazy people out there, and whether it’s a pug or a poodle, siamese or snake, the pet lovers of the world who have moved home at least once will know that moving with your beloved pet can sometimes be tricky.
Depending on the type of animal, how far you’re moving and the tolerance your pet has to travel will play a huge factor in whether or not your 4 legged or 2 legged friend will survive the move in one piece.
Some animals undergo huge amounts of stress when they are pulled from their regular environment and put in transit so as to speak, and since they can’t talk to us like little children, how are we to know when enough is enough and the stress is just too much for them to bear?
I have been very fortunate to live an exciting and varied life that has resulted in me relocating several times to either follow my heart, my career or my next property purchase. For may years the pugs have been part of these relocations and Slick, (my eldest at 13 years) has moved house 7 times!
My pugs seem to enjoy moving and it has never really phased them too much. I think as long as they’re with me, they’re happy. We could be living on the street but provided there’s a bowl of food, a comfortable place to crash and fresh water, I don’t think they’re too fussed.
But what about those pets that don’t fare so well. What can you do to help your pet have a smooth transition when it’s time to move, and what are the things you should never do?
FIRSTLY, LET’S LOOK AT WHAT YOU SHOULDN’T DO.
1. NEVER let your pet go without fresh water.
This is a no-brainer. Confined spaces like the back seat of a car or a closed up room can raise temperatures quicker than normal. Access to fresh water is a must for your pet, especially in the hustle and bustle of a move.
2. NEVER let your pet roam free when the removalists are moving your things.
The last thing you want to be worrying about is a missing pet while you’re moving. With open doors and many sets of feet trapseing in and out of the house, it’s easy for fido to slip out between an opening and closing door, especially if your pet is a classic escape artist. Keep your pet secure or better still, arrange for a friend or a neighbour to mind your pet whilst the move is taking place.
3. NEVER leave your pet by themselves for an extended period of time.
Often our pets are the last thing on our minds when we’re moving. There’s so much to organise and coordinate that our furry friends’ needs can sometimes slip our minds. Make a member of your family specifically responsible for the pets so you know someone has the task of caring for them during the move. This way you can get on with all the other things that need to be done in this hectic time. Like us, pets undergo a huge amount of stress when their secure world seemingly is transformed in an instant and if you can do what you can to comfort them during this time, they will surely thank you for it in their own little way.
5. NEVER feed your pet a huge meal before the move.
If your pet will undergo some extended travel time during your move, then it’s not really wise to load up their tummy beforehand. Work out the times when your pet will be in transit and plan their meals ahead so they aren’t moving on a full stomach.
6. NEVER leave your pet behind.
I thought I’d throw this one in because believe it not but throughout my real estate career I’ve witnessed many pets simply left behind! That’s right, sometimes the owners completely forget about them (intended or unintended). I once had a pet cat left at a property for weeks before the new owners decided to formally adopt her. Despite many attempts to contact the previous owners, they simply weren’t interested. How sad.
If your pets are anything like mine then they’re practically human. Don’t treat them any different and remember they have needs and feelings too. It’s just not as easy for them to show how they feel or tell you what they need.
A move is considered one of the most stressful times in someone’s life, so why should it differ for your pets?