Moving with pets? You’re not alone. According to a recent study by the American Pet Products Association, 11 million families move with their pets annually. So how do you keep Fluffy happy when prepping for a new move? Easy: plan ahead.
While exotic pets require extra-special attention during moves, Penske Truck Rental is focusing on dogs and cats – the most common furry friends among Americans. Their experts and the Humane Society recommend the following additional tips to help pet owners and their four-legged friends have a safe, comfortable and stress-free move.
Before the Move:
Get a microchip. The Humane Society recommends getting microchips for cats and dogs prior to a move. Microchips are tiny transponders containing a dog or cat’s unique identification code. Microchip companies use this code to identify lost pets and retrieve the owner’s contact information.
Plan Ahead. Make sure your cat or dog has a sturdy collar with its name, your name, your cell phone number and your destination address and phone number (or another emergency contact).
Have an emergency plan. If your dog becomes ill while traveling, ask your vet about a new prescription medication for motion sickness treatment. In case of emergency, research a few emergency animal care centers or veterinary hospitals along your planned travel route.
Buy a crate. Pet crates provide a safe haven for most animals during long rides in a moving truck and help reduce their anxiety levels. Purchase a pet travel crate if you don’t already own one, and crate train your pet in advance of your move by taking it on shorter trips in your car.
Pack Fido’s suitcase. Pack a traveling bag with items such as food, water, treats, plastic bags, a scoop and bed, if needed. Stock up on at least one week’s worth of your pet’s medications, should you have difficulty scheduling an appointment with your new veterinarian.
Know your movers. Moving is a stressful experience for your pets. Reduce their anxiety by researching a company that recognizes the special needs of your pet, like Penske Truck Rental (www.pensketruckrental.com)
On Moving Day:
Schedule bathroom breaks. Refrain from feeding your pet for a few hours before and during the trip to avoid an upset stomach, but be sure to keep your pet hydrated with plenty of water.
Stay by their side. Your pet should always ride up front in the truck cab with you, either in its crate or secured in a harness. Be sure your pet is leashed or in a crate when outside your truck and that it is always wearing its ID tag.
Check for overheating. Do not leave your pet in the cab of the truck with the windows up while stopped. Animals can quickly overheat in these areas. If your pet becomes overheated while traveling, take it into an air-conditioned area and place it in a shallow tub of cool water or rub it down with cool, wet towels.