Moving house with cats

Moving house is supposed to be one of life’s most stressful experiences. If your New Year is bringing with it a new house, Jaycliffe Pets offers its best tips on how to make the process as stress-free as possible. Well, for your cats at least.

Before moving

Packing can be hectic, and what your pet perceives as losing a familiar and safe environment is possibly the most traumatic part. An easy solution to this is booking your cat into a cattery as a quiet, secure place for a few days. It also means there is no danger to the cat being injured in the packing process, not to mention one less thing for you to trip over.

If they’ll be with you during the pre-move process, place your cat in an enclosed  room on the day of the move. This means you’ll know that your cat is safe, and also be able to find them when it’s time to leave…

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During the big day

If checking your cat into a cattery for a few days isn’t an option, his or her needs have to be prioritised. Firstly, feed your cat in the morning – not too close to moving time in case there are any accidents in the car! And make sure he or she has had access to a litter tray.

Secure the carrier with a seat belt in the car, or wedge it safely in the boot. Never transport the cat loose or in the removals van!

If a short stop is unavoidable, ensure the car is well-ventilated at all times, and although this might be an obvious one, never leave the cat in a hot car.

On arrival, make sure a safe space for your cat is the first thing at the top of the (probably very long) to-do list. If your cat had a favourite room in your old house, try creating a similar set up in your new property. Fill this space with things that might have their scent on it – such as their bedding and a favourite blanket.

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For more detailed tips on settling in, check out Jaycliffe Pets’ advice on how to prepare your home for a cat.

After the move

Like many of their human companions, cats are creatures of habit. As such, they are liable to making return trips to familiar territory, particularly if you’ve not moved far.

To establish their connection with your new home, keep your cat indoors for about a month, and establish a routine. Feed small infrequent meals and give plenty of attention to build up the bond between you.

In anticipation of their first adventure outside, sprinkle some used litter around the perimeter of your new garden. This familiarity will be comforting to the cat, as well as notify neighbouring cats of a new territory.

When it’s time to go out for the first time, withhold food for 12 hours before they go out, then resume the routine. It’s important to make it clear to the cat that the new house is a source of food, shelter and familiar smells, and the old house no longer provides this.

Finally, warn the new occupants of your old house that they may be receiving an enthusiastic furry visitor, and ask them to contact you if this happens.

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Jaycliffe Pets offers a high quality care service for your pets whilst you are away from home – from daycare services to long-term holiday stays. Our Rotherham-based cattery, kennels and grooming services are run by caring experts. Our team live on site to ensure your pet gets true round-the-clock care. For more information, or to book your pet in for a visit, contact our friendly team today.