Top Advice for Moving with Pets

Doodles, Boo & OscarMort, too 3 Comments

I just counted and it’s a maximum of 5 weeks before we move.

At 5 weeks out, you’d think we’d have a slightly more confirmed date, but the thing is, moving can ONLY take place once primary school graduation takes place and well, the relocation company are somewhat on the laid-back side of the helpfulness spectrum.

When we first told the kids we were moving, there was a certain amount of resistance.  The girls’ major concern was about missing out on post Y12 shenanigans between the end of their exams and starting uni. At 17, social life is a serious concern and messing with it is a significant parenting fail. The move to Queensland doesn’t change the course of their plans majorly – they are still intent on gaining places at the University of Adelaide.

(Is that strange?  Everyone seems to assume they will apply to Queensland now.  Should they?)

The thing is, South Australia doesn’t require Y12 English for uni entry – whereas it’s mandatory in every other state, so even if they suddenly wanted to be close to their adoring mama, it might not be possible.  They dropped English at the end of Y11 with unbridled glee: my daughters’ aversion for English does nothing to allay this dark haired mother’s suspicions that the little blonde cherubs she left hospital with 17 years ago were somehow accidentally swapped, and I brought home the wrong pair of twins.

Anyway, us shipping out merely impacts their access to mates; our status as portable cash machines won’t have to change with the wonders of online banking, so they got over the shock fairly quickly.

Herbert’s reaction was another matter.  The world ended the night we told him.  He was gutted that he was going to be uprooted yet again, and he was not enamoured at the thought of having to re-establish himself in a whole new set of friendship groups.  It’s been a few weeks now, and the prospect of living half an hour from amusement parks, the chance to play rugby and the fact that his friends will still be in the same country, so could visit, has been sufficient inducement to persuade him round to the idea.

Once they’d got over the initial trauma of leaving friends behind, we got onto the topic of pets.  I was a bit horrified when both the girls announced they thought we should leave Oscarmort behind and donate him to the neighbours.  (To be fair, he does believe they are part of the huminion host that he rules, as he spends a lot of his time scanning for bad birdies from the comfort of their front lawn).  But still!  Oscar is my fur-baby. (Albeit, officially he is Twin2’s cat. Which is a fact only referred to on occasions when he refuses to show me any affection. So often…)

Moving with pets

In fact, the menagerie has been increasing ever since it dawned on me that not one, but two of my childs will fly the nest simultaneously.  The Grumpster is already concerned about the eventual size of the said menagerie once the girls actually go to university.  So I have been given a strict instruction that I MUST FIND A JOB.  Yeah, right…  I already have a vision of me driving around in the truck (we’ve agreed we will swap cars and I can have that when we move) with the dogs on board, en route to parks for walks and runs. And then tapping my random thoughts into here. I won’t have TIME for real-life paid employment….

Up until this week, I had made absolutely NO progress in terms of planning for the move. Except I had researched “moving with pets”. And as a result, I have invested in a lot of Adaptil, which mimics a pheromone secreted by mother dogs to calm their puppies.  Having a puppy (OK, so he’s nearly 5, but he’s still a baby in my eyes), who is uncalm 80% of every day when life is normal, I’m hoping this will get him over the stress of flying interstate and being separated from us for the best part of a day. Sedation doesn’t sound like a good option (find out why here), so I’m thinking a visit to the vet for anti-anxiety meds might be the way to go.

I'm not anxious, I just need to be close
I’m not anxious, I just need to be close

Gracie-Boo will just drool and fart, as is her wont. A drive to the local shops 500m away is enough to induce the symptoms, so I’m pretty sure she’s going to be a quivering wreck from the outset. If I’m über-honest, it makes me glad that she has to travel in cargo, so I don’t have to sniff the consequences.  But as she is keen on sleeping, I’m hoping her instinct for laziness will kick in early on the day.

My other great concern is that Oscarmort won’t be allowed to fly to Brisbane.

This is not on account of disease or infection, but rather volume. The thing is he’s got to be transported first to Adelaide, then wait for a flight and then be transported to Brisbane, which translates as a long period of time where he is going to be subjected to being on the wrong side of a door.

And as everyone should know (according to Oscarmort), this is not a situation to be tolerated. He has perfected the pitch of his meow so that it reaches unbearable in less than a minute, resulting in appropriate avoidance action by every hearing huminion. (In other words, the door is opened). My research into moving with pets didn’t throw up any information on the availability of small gags for kitty cats. Funny that. Anyway, suffice to say, I suspect the loud complaining will be enough for them to attach a small parachute and evict him midair somewhere between here and Brissy…

Moving with pets
Can anyone see Oscarmort?

So if you’re faced with moving with pets, here is what to do:

  1. Ensure your pet is familiar with a crate ahead of moving day. (Tick – you can’t get Gracie and Oscar out of one at times). You can find out more about the crate requirements here.
  2. Talk to your vet about anxious pets to discuss options for moving day.
  3. Introduce packing boxes as early as possible, so that they grow acclimatised to the boxes being around. Cats will thank you. Mainly because they get to sit in them.Boxes are fun
  4. If you’re using Adaptil, plug it in early in the week of moving to start emitting the calming pheromones.  (I’m so hoping this stuff actually works).
  5. The day before moving, keep cats isolated to a room with little traffic, so that you have them contained.  They just know when it’s moving day and invariably do a bunk. Also, check that you can find the kitty and that it isn’t still sitting in one of the packing boxes that is now sealed. Just saying…
  6. If you hear of any small cat gags available (legally) on the market, let me know. 🙂

So there you have it, my top tips for moving with pets. Wish us look. Particularly Oscarmort!

The three musketeers
The three musketeers


Cover image credit: Mrs_Sabbatical’s insta account. Find her fabulous blog here.

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