Wednesday, July 21, 2004
Protecting Your Pet: Moving With Pets
Moving to a new home can be tough on the whole family - especially our animals. In today's Protecting Your Pet-- Health Specialist Marilyn Mitzel shows us how to turn a strange pad into a home sweet home.
(WSVN) -- Think moving out is traumatic for you - think about our poor pets.
Dr. Chris Stevens,Emerald Hills Animal Hospital: "They are going to be scared and they are going to be hiding."
Katrina went through it with two dogs and a cat.
Her dog Cierra took it the hardest.
Katrina Manseau: "She ran around the house all confused the first night and when she realized I was here she calmed down and jumped in the bed and wouldn't move."
Her cat - Stitch - is still hiding under the bed.
Animals are creatures of habit - they hate change. But you can make it easier on them by thinking ahead.
Dr. Chris Stevens: "I think dogs tend to acclimate a little bit better, easier than cats."
First - know where they are at all times. This is a dangerous period.
Dr. Chris Stevens: "In a move a lot of times doors are left open and animals escape. They can get lost -- they may not even mean to. It's a new environment."
Just in case - they must always wear identification.
Keep them on a leash, or in a cage with a piece of your worn clothing to comfort them.
Before moving in - inspect each room for danger zones.
Pet pitfalls like holes -- exposed wires or toxic substances.
When all's clear - let them explore.
Katrina: "Show them that this is basically their house. Let them run around and smell everything. You know play -- and do whatever they want to do -- Whatever makes them happy to get used to it."
Another smart idea!
Katrina: "I would basically not try to get them everything new."
Dr. Stevens: "The best thing to do for dogs and cats is to have their familiar things. Have their bowls that they eat out of and drink out of. Also have their same pet beds. Their toys."
Stick to their feeding and walking routines as best you can.
If your cat's in hiding -- put the litter box and food close by.
Katrina: "I still have to carry her to her food dish to make sure she eats."
If possible, take those first few days off work to ease the transition and yours.
Katrina: "They still look out the window when I leave because they aren't sure it they are supposed to be here."
Day by day -- Katrina's pets are settling in.
Dr. Stevens: "They adapt and do really well. It just takes a little time."
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Dr. Chris Stevens
Emerald Hills Animal Hospital