Moving is an exhilarating time, particularly if you’re relocating to (or around) the beauty that is Colorado. However, it can also be rather anxiety-producing thanks to all the seriously stressful packing, organizing, transporting, boxing, lifting, and so on that naturally comes with the territory of relocation.
Add on the extra factor of dealing with a pet, and that immediately makes everything far worse. Luckily, just taking a few steps and keeping a couple of things in mind before you start the process can make the situation easier on both you and your furry friend.
Ready to get going? Read along for five of our essential tips for moving around Denver with a pet this winter.
1. Make Everything as Calm as Possible
Pets – especially cats – are creatures of habit. They love their routines and can get very upset if their usual way of doing things is interrupted in any way, which can ultimately make them sick. Try to stop this from happening in the first place by making everything as calm as possible during your upcoming move.
Maintain normalcy whenever possible by keeping the same mealtimes, following a typical sleep schedule (even if you’re sorely tempted to pack in the middle of the night!), and set aside plenty of time for play and affection. Additionally, try to stay de-stressed because your companion will naturally react to any anxiousness on your part.
That means no panic cleaning, unhelpful procrastination, moving at the very last minute, irritable packing marathons, etc. None of it will do either of you any good. Stay calm, get started early, and you’ll be surprised how effortless the moving process can really be.
2. Pack a Pet Bag
Anytime you move, one of the best things you can do to ease the early transition is to pack a bag of all your essentials. Toothpaste, toothbrush, phone chargers, a couple of changes of clothes, and something to entertain you can then immediately be pulled out no extensive search or box opening necessary, allowing you a short grace period to get acclimated.
Like that idea? Riff off it and help your canine buddy, feline friend, or otherwise by gathering together a similar bag just for them. Pack up plenty of food for a few days, their bowls, treats, leash, favorite toys, and anything else they might need right after your move. Having it all right at hand will be much more convenient, and your pet pal won’t have to whine and wait, hoping you’ll find their leash before they explore.
Really, it's a win-win for everyone.
3. Consider Kennel Boarding for the Day
As a pet parent, it’s totally natural to want the fuzzy members of your family by your side at all times. After all, we just want to make sure they’re safe and happy, which usually happens under the watchful eye of your company.
However, there are times it’s genuinely better to have them elsewhere while you take care of stuff and moving is usually one of them. All the noise and flurry of activity, new smells, and unusual schedules can work them up fast, making them scared and on-edge -- not to mention the fact that all the open doors and going in and out with heavy boxes are very real dangers.
Your pet can easily get stepped on or wander outside and get lost. Prevent both by simply keeping your pal away from the moving day chaos. Our suggestion is to board them at a kennel for the day.
The city has a ton of great options like the beloved Big Backyard, Paradise 4 Paws, or City Bark Denver and will ensure your four-legged friend stays safe and happy as you get their new home ready for them.
Don’t have the cash? Ask and see if a friend can watch them or at least put them in the bathroom as you’re moving boxes. It’s always better to be safe than sorry!
4. Reach Out to Your Vet
No matter if you’re moving down the street here in Denver or you’re driving through several states to become Colorado’s newest resident, there will always be a ton to consider when you’re relocating with a pet. And, unfortunately, you might not think of everything or will need a little more guidance than any one guide can provide to keep your bestest buddy safe and content during the process.
That’s why you should reach out to your vet as soon as you start planning your move. They can be a huge ally in the cause, helping you make sure that all your bases are covered during the move.
For example, they should be able to offer ideas (or medication) to keep an anti-traveler calm, provide any shots necessary for a new residence, print out important medical records in case you need to visit a different vet, give you advice to help your pet through the new home adjustment period, and more. Additionally, any vets in the area you’re moving to might be able to offer recommendations for good kennel/boarding businesses, dog parks, training classes, and other pet-related things that might come in handy in this new phase of your life.
5. Be Prepared for Difficulties
So, you’ve gone through the list and are now better prepared to make moving with your pet a smoother, less fraught process. That’s great to hear, but make no mistake, moving with your kitty cat or pup still might not be a 100% perfect, completely stress-free activity.
Anytime you make such a big life transition, there’s a possibility of problems, and you should be prepared for this. Don’t immediately anticipate that any bad scenarios will happen, but do have a plan in place in the event that they do.
First things first, update your pet’s microchip information if you don’t plan to go through with boarding them during your relocation. That way, if they do wander out and get lost, finding their way back home will be faster.
Beyond this, plan in advance for how you’ll deal with any stress, winter weather delays (a genuine issue within snowy Denver), missing pet supplies, or other curveballs that might crop up. Your pet pal will thoroughly appreciate you putting them and their needs first.