Published by: Ingrid King. Last Updated on: February 6, 2023 by Crystal Uys
This post is sponsored by Sleepypod
Moving is stressful for humans, and it’s even more stressful for cats. Cats are creatures of habit who hate having their routine disrupted, but there are things you can do to make the entire process less taxing for both cat and human.
This is the last post in a three-part series about moving with cats. Part one addressed how to prepare for a move. In part two, we provided tips on how to make moving day as stress free as possible, whether you’re moving locally or all the way across the country.
Today, we’ll offer some tips on how you can help your cats settle into your new home.
Cat proof your new home
Before you even move your cat into your new home, cat proof the entire house. Make sure window screens are secure. Check for any areas where a scared cat could hide and close them off. Make sure that any chemicals such as pest control traps or cleaning supplies that may have been left behind by the previous owners are removed.
Set up a safe space for your cat
Set up a quiet room for your cat that includes a litter box, fresh water, and his comfort items. If your cat is used to sleeping with you, your bedroom is the perfect choice for this safe room. Scatter some cat treats around the room before you let the cat out of her carrier to explore. “The first thing we always do is get Duncan out of the car and into a room with a litter box, water, and small amount of food and his crate so he can hide and chill out while we are getting settled,” said Mary, who moved and snow birded many times with her cats.
For the first few days in the new home, especially while you’re still unpacking boxes, it may be a good idea to confine the cat to her quiet room. Make sure you spend time with your cat in her safe room, no matter how busy you are with unpacking and getting settled. Your cat needs to know that some things haven’t changed.
Let your cat explore slowly
Slowly start giving your cat access to the rest of the house and let him explore gradually. Supervise your cat during these exploration sessions until he’s comfortable. During this phase of the move, you should place litter boxes in their permanent locations. If you’re planning on getting rid of the litter box in the safe room, make sure your cat is using the other boxes first.
When Linda and her partner Joe moved with 11-year-old cats Chauncey and Grace and 8-year-old Maggie Mae from North Palm Beach, FL to St. Louis, MO, they chose a rather unusual method: they hired a private jet to make the move as stress-free as possible. They also hired a transition moving consultant, who set up litter pans for the cats at their new home in advance. When they arrived, Linda opened all three carriers simultaneously so each cat could leave the carrier at their own pace. “Chauncey and Maggie Mae exited immediately,” said Linda. “Gracie took a couple of hours to assess the situation before she left her carrier.”
No two cats will react to the stress of a move the same way. Some cats will immediately explore and take over their new house, while others will take weeks to venture out of their safe room. Let your cat’s temperament be your guide as to how long this initial settling in phase needs to take.
About Sleepypod’s Carriers
Sleepypoid’s multifunctional carriers are ideal carriers for moving. They can be used as cozy napping spots at home, and easily convert to safe car seats or airline carriers.
The Sleepypod Mobile Pet Bed is so much more than just a carrier. It’s a luxury bed, lined with ultraplush foam. The domed cover unzips easily, so you can adapt it to your cat’s sleeping preference even while using it inside your home. Some cats may prefer the top removed, others may like the security of the cover.
When used as a carrier, the Sleepypod not only lets your cat travel in comfort, it’s also the safest cat carrier on the market. Velcro positioning points that secure a seat belt in place turn the Sleepypod into a safe car seat. The Pet Passenger Restraint System (PPRS) is a safety system designed by Sleepypod to secure a pet in a vehicle and restrict harmful movement resulting from a sudden vehicle stop or frontal collision. Sleepypod puts all their carriers through stringent safety tests at the same standards set for child safety restraints.
If you’ve ever had to research traveling by plane with your cat, you have most likely run into confusing size restrictions, depending on which airline you check with. The Sleepypod Air’s innovative design addresses this issue by providing size versatility through flexibility. The unique design allows the carrier to contract to fit under the seat during takeoff and landing. Once the plane is in the air, the carrier can easily be expanded so that your cat can have the largest possible space underneath the seat.
For more information about Sleepypod and all of their products, please visit Sleepypod.com.
*FTC Disclosure: This is a sponsored post, which means that I was compensated to feature this content. Regardless of payment received, you will only see products or services featured on this site that I believe are of interest to our readers.
About the author
Ingrid King is an award-winning author, former veterinary hospital manager, and veterinary journalist who is passionate about cats.