How to move house with a cat
Moving house is a big change for all family members - and none more so than your fourlegged fluff balls. Cats are creatures of habit, so a disruption in their routines can be very unsettling. So how do you move house with a cat?
Claire from our marketing team is in the middle of relocating her family across the country... she's a big researcher and planner, so we asked her how she plans to moving homes with a cat:
Cats are sensitive animals. And Gizmo is a particularly sensitive lady... she’s getting a bit old and cranky. She's partly deaf, has only three legs and is making it perfectly clear that is not a fan of all the boxes that keep appearing in our living room. So when it became clear that we were going to be moving home soon I knew we had to make this as stress free as possible for our elderly girl.
Get out the traveling box
Our cat used to hate her little crate. She clearly associated it with her annual vet trip and would run the other way when she saw it coming out of the cupboard. So, for a week or so before the move we popped the crate in our living room and allowed Gizmo to roam freely around and into it. Soon she was settling down inside it purring - a much more relaxed way to be before a move.
Make sure that when the crate is in your vehicle to move it is secure and isn’t able to move around the car. Use seat belts and carefully placed packing materials to keep it stable and keep air free flowing.
Make a cat safe location
When we first rehomed our cats, we were advised to dedicate a room to them for the first few weeks. This became their sanctuary and they stayed there reassuring themselves that this was their new home. We plan the same when we move Gizmo, we will have a quiet cat safe location where she can stay safely whilst our belongings are carried out of our house, and we will then set up another in our new home full of her things where she can settle in her own time. It's important to make sure that you keep to routines, and that includes the cat’s food (Gizmo is a fan of Paw Lickin' Chicken), also make sure that litter trays are kept topped up and clean and don’t be cross if your cat has the occasional accident.
Pheromones could calm your cat
Cats communicate through leaving pheromones from their cheeks on items in their territory. When you move them out of their territory an into somewhere new their scent markings will be missing. You can buy synthetic pheromones that help to mimic a cat's making them feel more confident and secure. My vet even suggested wiping a soft cloth around their cheeks, and then wiping the same cloth around “cat height” in the new home to make the house seem more familiar
Update your microchip information
If you're moving to a new house make sure that the microchip information reflects your new contact details - its so easy for a cat to wander around their new territory and get lost. Make sure they can find their way home again, and register with a local vet.
Whether you are in the middle of a house move, or are settling into your new home, we hope these tips for moving house with a cat are useful.
Thanks for sharing your research Claire, we hope the move goes purr-fectly!
Information here is not intended to be used as medical advice - you have any concerns about your cats behaviour or medical welfare please speak to your vet.