Moving with Pets

Moving with Pets

Looking for a pet-friendly REALTOR? The Columbus Team is at your service. We consider your pet a member of your family. Below, please find some useful information on moving to a new home with pets, and consider printing as a general checklist so your pet’s needs are met during this busy transition!

Here are some great tips for moving with pets. These tips can help you get prepared, transport your pet safely with less stress, and help your pet acclimate to their new surroundings. Congratulations on your new home, and we wish you and your pets a happy life in a comfortable new space.

Before the Move

  • Order a new tag for your pet with your new address.
  • Update your pet’s microchip at your current vet, adding current and future contact information so your pet can be returned if they get loose.
  • Establish a relationship with a vet close to your new home.
  • Request extra medication or therapeutic foods.
  • Ensure any hotel stays are at pet-friendly hotels.
  • If traveling by air, consult your airline about rules and requirements for pet travel.
  • Check your new city and county websites to learn about requirements for pet owners. Do you need a license? How soon? How often do you need to update immunizations? Are there leash laws? Is your animal legal in your new neighborhood?
  • Is your new home within 20 miles? Be prepared to send a photo of your pet and your new contact info to your old neighbors in case your pet gets loose and tries to make their way home.
  • Ask your vet if a tranquilizer is advisable for moving day.
  • If you’re moving internationally, check on quarantine and health laws around importing a domestic animal.

During the Move

  • Have at LEAST a week’s worth of medication and familiar food on hand
  • Carry a large bottle of water from home, as pet drinking water, to minimize tummy upset.
  • Put together a pet first aid kit with a towel, gauze, styptic pen, nail clipper, muzzle, cotton swabs, hydrogen peroxide, and breed-specific emergency supplies.
  • Restrain your pet in the car or airplane. Use a crate or harness for their safety.
  • Offer restroom breaks for your pet if applicable (don’t forget baggies for clean-up), and give plenty of love and reassurance.
  • If your pet stays calmer in the dark, have a cage-cover ready.
  • Pack your pet’s bedding, favorite toys, and comfort objects with you, so they are available immediately upon arrival to the new home.

After the Move

  • Prepare a single room in the new home with food, water, toys, and crate. Allowing your pet to acclimate in a quiet space limits the stress and unhappiness big changes can bring. Keep windows and doors closed.
  • Double check that fences, pet doors, and pet features are clean, free of splinters or other hazards, and work smoothly with no possibility of escape.
  • Offer quiet, calm opportunities to explore additional indoor space as your pet becomes comfortable. Offer time to explore outdoor spaces after pets become acclimated indoors.
  • If you must change brands or types of foods, mix it into familiar food a little more at a time each feeding until 100% switched over.
  • Offer plenty of affection and reassurance.
  • Familiar routines, such as schedules and training habits can give comfort to nervous pets.
  • Even if your pet is normally safe off-leash, use the leash until your pet has settled in.
  • Request a records transfer from your old vet to the new.
  • Schedule a visit with the new vet, both to get acquainted and to establish a health baseline at the new practice.
  • Begin the process of licensing pets if needed, and put immunization schedule on the calendar.
  • If you can’t find your pet’s favorite food in your new location, consider ordering online for a few weeks until they’ve acclimated to the new home, instead of changing everything at once.