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Moving Your Pet Safely

Keep Up Your Regular Routines

  Keep your pets' routines (feeding, exercise, and play-time) as regular as possible. During the move itself, you may want to leave your pet at a friend's house. That way you won't have to worry about the pet getting in your way, or worse, running away.

Visit Your Veterinarian Before the Trip

  Before the move, take your pet to your veterinarian for a thorough physical exam. If your cat or dog is on any medication, be sure that you have enough for the period while you are settling into your new home and have the time to locate a reputable vet in your new area.

  Don't forget to take with you copies of your pets' records. It will make things much easier for the new veterinarian at the new location. To find a new veterinarian near your new home you can call the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) at (800) 883-6301.

Check on State Laws Regarding Pets

  Since the laws and regulations regarding the importation of animals differ from one state to another, check with a veterinarian in the new area before your move to be sure your pet complies with that state's requirements. Make sure to do this a few weeks in advance since the process may involve some paperwork.

Moving your pets by plane

  Be aware that some arilines will not transport pets at all and most that do will only do so when the temperature outside is within a limited range. Be sure to check with the airline you intend to use ahead of time

  Try to book a direct flight to minimize the time the animal may be sitting outside the plane on the tarmack in inclement weather conditions and to reduce to the minimum the chance of your pet being lost as luggage and it are transferred from one plane to another. Some airlines provide counter-to-counter service so your pet will be carried on and off the plane by an airline employee. This service costs a little more, but it may be worth it for your pet's health and your peace of mind.

Moving your Pet by Car

  Avoid feeding or giving your pets water for several hours before your begin the drive to your new home unless they are very used to traveling in the car with you. Try to be attentive to your pets' well-being. Make a stop whenever your pet seems to be uncomfortable. Be ready to make frequent stops for feeding and resting. Try to feed your pets on a schedule as close as possible to their schedule before you started the trip If possible, never leave your pet in the car alone. It is against the law in some states, but if you must, remember to open the windows and sunroof if you have one and lock the doors. Do not leave your pet alone in the car for long. Take the pet out for a walk if possible during most of your stops. Remember that they need to relive themselves just as you do.

  Find hotels in advance of your drive that accept pets. Listings of animal-friendly hotels are available from the U S Auto Club (AAA) and will help you find overnight lodging during your move. Some hotel chains accept pets at almost all of thier locations, but be aware taht some localities have laws banning pets in hotels and motels so do your homework on this before you start driving.

Moving Your Cat

  Since cats tend to become more attached to their environment rather than to people, moving with cats will be harder on them. When relocating with a cat, you must prepare in advance. Show your cat plenty of attention and constantly reassure it with familiar items and scents so the move does not come as a shock.

  Since most cats are not familiar with traveling in a car as dogs are, try to take your cat on short trips around the neighborhood and then slowly increase the distance in the weeks before your move.

  If your cat is present during the move, confine it in its favorite room along with its favorite bed and toys. That way you reduce the chance of your cat running away or getting lost in one of the boxes while you are packing.

  At your new home, provide your cat with a comfortable living space. Limit the cats' explorations to just the new house and then, if you allow it outside, gradually accompany it on tours outside. Confining an "outdoor" cat in this manner may seem a bit cruel, but cats are more likely to try to return to their old house, no matter the distance for quite a while. It might take a month till the cat feels comfortable in the new home and becomes familiar with its particular scents and noises.

Moving Your Dog

  Unlike cats who prefer the routine, dogs may welcome a change in their environment. Dogs become more attached to their owners as opposed to their environment. Therefore moving a dog is easier than moving a cat. Most likely, your dog has become accustomed to riding in a car and being on a leash. But it is recommended that you further condition your dog for longer car rides. Drive with him around the neighborhood a few times.

  Since dogs, just like cats, may become upset on moving day when they see all of the unusual activity, you may want to consider confining the dog in its favorite room along with its favorite blanket and toys until things settle down and you're ready to get in the car.

  As soon as you arrive at your new home, take your dog for a walk immediately. Help your dog become familiar with the new neighborhood. Let it sniff around and mark its territory. Because dogs develop strong relationships with their owners, they're less likely to run away. In the new home, provide a comfortable sleeping area for the dog and try to keep a familiar routine of walks and meals. Dogs must go outside everyday.

Purchase a new ID tag for your pet(s)

  As soon as you know your new address, get a pet ID tag that includes your new address and telephone number. An up-to-date ID tag is a lost pet's ticket home.

    I invite you to consider moving to the greater Sarasota Florida area and bring your pet. Once you visit Sarasota, I know you'll want to consider owning real estate here; either as a year-round home or condo or as a seasonal getaway spot in town or on Lido Key, Siesta Key, Longboat Key or one of our other "island keys."

    Request My Free Sarasota Information Kit or call me today for more information on the friendly, sunny Sarasota Florida lifestyle.

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  mary bernas, Florida luxury real estate expert
Mary Bernas
Cell: 941-376-8396
Fax: 941-387-9254
Michael Saunders & Co.
330 John Ringling Blvd
Sarasota, FL 34236
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