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Preparing your Four-Legged Family Member for your Move

Updated: Apr 11, 2021

Think about how stressful moving is for you. Now think about how stressful it can be for your pets who don’t understand the upheaval going on around them. They can’t verbally tell you how anxious, scared and nervous they are, so you have to take cues from their actions. How your pet reacts to your move depends on the individual animal. Maybe they are making potty messes in the house, are acting out by destroying your favorite shoes, or hiding under the bed. These are signs of a stressed animal. According to The Bark "some dogs will be perfectly comfortable within a few days; many take a few weeks to settle in; and some dogs can take months or more to feel at home in a new place." And the same can be said for cats. Per Spruce Pets, keep your cat indoors for at least two weeks before letting them outside so that their new home is familair to them.

When our family moved from our apartment to our current home, we had the luxury of introducing our dog Bentley to his new home prior to the move. He loves an adventure, but we could tell he was a bit nervous when we started packing. On several occasions when we took boxes to the new place, we took him too so he could run around to get used to the new space. He was excited when we finally moved in and felt right at home almost immediately. Unfortunately, not everyone has the same advantage as our Bentley had.

Here are tips for preparing your four-legged family member for your move.

1. Before you Go Update your pet’s microchip and tags with your new address in case they get skittish and run off. If you will be changing veterinarians, get your pet’s medical records for their new veterinarian. And find out the pet licensing requirements for your new town.

2. Moving Day Have your pet visit familiar family or friends for the day so they are not witnessing all the chaos going on in their home. Keep them on their regular feeding and walk schedule, if possible. Before bringing your fur baby to the new house, set up an area with familiar objects like their bed, favorite toys, scratching post, and a fresh bowl of water. This can all be moved to their permanent locations later, but for now your pet will have comfort knowing his stuff made it to the new house.

3. Home Sweet Home To ensure the safety of your pet, take a quick look around your new home for any hazardous materials or unsafe hiding areas before letting your pet explore their new digs. Dogs will generally dart around while a cat is likely to be cautious. Let them look around at their own pace. Most of all, keep to their routine as much as possible. Now is not the time to try to change habits. And finally, give your pets extra love and attention. It will do all of you some good as you adjust to your new home.

Written by Stacey Imber, Co-Owner of Moving Crew NJ, LLC

Moving Crew NJ, LLC, is a family-owned, local moving company that recognizes the difficulties of finding a moving company that will tackle the small moves. Whether it's a large piece of furniture that needs to go into the next room or a home full of furniture going to a new location, Moving Crew NJ will get it there safely, efficiently, and economically. Contact Moving Crew NJ, LLC, at or visit for all your moving needs. No job is too small!

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