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Tips for Moving with Pets

Moving with a pet can be stressful for you, and for your four-legged friend. There are plenty of things you can do, though, that will make things a little bit easier for your pet. That’s true whether you’re moving down the street or across the country. If you choose a place like Maine and you’re coming from a warm climate, you’ll also have to get your pet used to the different weather. It’s often best to plan your move when the weather is mild, but you may not always have that choice.

If you’re moving during warm weather, you’ll want to make sure you have adequate cooling in your vehicle. Even if you’re comfortable, remember that your pet has a fur coat on. He or she may also be very nervous, and that anxiety can lead to added feelings of warmth. With a cooler environment and water to drink, your pet will be more likely to feel better throughout the move. If you have a very nervous pet and you’re worried about the trip, you can also ask your veterinarian for a mild tranquilizer. That will help your pet relax on the trip, and can reduce anxiety-provoked barking or meowing.

Moving during cold weather is different. You’ll want to be mindful of the temperature and make sure you have a good heater, but you also have to consider whether it’s safe to leave your pet in the car when you stop for the night. Many people choose to look for pet-friendly hotels, instead, because these options can mean a safe, comfortable room for you and your pets. Depending on where you’re moving from and where you’re headed, though, you may not have many options along your route. Leaving your pets in the car overnight can be done safely, but it’s not recommended in very cold weather.

Also consider bringing along some toys or games for your pet to play with. That’s especially important if you’re headed to your new Maine home with your dog, because dogs often have a lot of energy. You want your pet to be entertained during the trip. Plan to take a little longer to arrive at your new destination, so you can take frequent breaks. Then you can let your dog run and play a little every few hours, and can make sure he or she has the chance to eat, drink water, and use the bathroom.

Traveling with a cat is usually less stressful, since cats can be caged and don’t need to be taken out of the car for bathroom breaks. Still, you want to make sure your kitty has plenty of food and water, a comfortable place to sleep, and access to a litter box. By doing that, your trip will be easier, and your pet will travel more comfortably. Planning ahead is very important, so you and your pet can have a great adventure together. Pets can really make a house a home, no matter where you’re moving to or what time of year you’re getting settled in.

If you’re looking for a new dog to bring home, please consider adopting from one of these great local organizations: The Pixel Fund and The Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland.