Make it a Happy Move for Your Pets.

happy dog

When you move to a new place, every member of your family should be comfortable. Dogs, cats, and other animals are especially sensitive to moving. The secret to pet relocation is planning. Here are a few tips for you to consider.

PET CHECKLIST for your Destination:

Check the rules and regulations before moving your pets.

Bring certificates and vet records with you to show that your pet has had the proper inspections and vaccines. These requirements may differ in your new home, especially when moving to a new state.

Texas Rules

Each state has their own laws and regulations for pet owners. To enter Texas and be in accordance with its state law, all dogs and cats three months of age or older must be vaccinated against rabies and have a rabies vaccination certificate dated and signed by the veterinarian who administered the immunization.

Local ordinances

Check with the City or County Clerk's office in your new town to find out about local ordinances. You can learn about leash laws, licensing rules, limits on the number of pets per household, and zoning laws that may prohibit specific animals in some areas. Texas is horse country, and there are minimum land size requirements for keeping horses, cows, goats other large animals. Poultry is also highly regulated. Make no assumptions.

Apartments, Condos & townhouses developments

Many communities have limitations on the size, number and breed of pets. Many don’t even permit cats and dogs, let alone exotic pets. Make sure that you know the policies for your pets and any extra costs they charge for pets. Rules can apply to purchased property as well as rental units.

Apartments, Condos & townhouses developments

Many communities have limitations on the size and number of pets, and many don’t even permit cats and dogs, let alone exotic pets like iguanas, snakes, tarantulas, and ferrets. Make sure that you know the policies for your pets and any extra costs they charge for pets. Rules can apply to purchased property as well as rental units.

Health certificates

Many states require a health certificate for dogs and some require it for cats and other pets as well. Although not required in Texas, most airlines require a health certificate issued by a veterinarian within seven to ten days prior to travel. Check with your airline for details.

Rabies tags

Most states require a rabies tag for cats, dogs, and some exotic animals.

Permits

You may need to purchase a permit before your exotic pet can enter your new home state. Ask your veterinarian for help with the application process.

TIP: Make an extra copy of meaningful documents to carry in your car. You’ll need it in case of emergency pet care during your trip, and perhaps at later dates as well.


How to Keep Your Pet Safe While Moving

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ensure your pets’ safety

Take items that will help you:

  • find your pets if they get lost

  • tools to help while traveling

  • papers to help your pets if they get hurt

Collar

Make sure you have collars on your pets while traveling. You know the temperament your pet. If they tend to get restless or fidgety, you may want to get a harness they can’t wiggle out of.

ID tag

ID tags are a must! If your pet can wear a collar, put one on and attach an ID tag. Tags should include the pet's name, your name, and the destination address and your phone number. For birds, use a tag on a leg band.

Microchip

Pets with microchips are most likely to be returned to you. Your info is entered into a pet recovery system so if your pet gets lost, you’ll be contacted once it’s found.

Records

Getting your pet's health records from your veterinarian will help a new vet provide the best care for your pet. Most pet-sitters and groomers also require medical records before they will accept them for service.

 TIP: Take water from your home, or bottled water to serve to your pet during the trip. This may help keep your pet calm and prevent them from getting sick from an unfamiliar water source.

TIP: Take water from your home, or bottled water to serve to your pet during the trip. This may help keep your pet calm and prevent them from getting sick from an unfamiliar water source.

Pictures

Have good photos of your pet on your cell phone. You can show your new neighbors what your pet looks like if it gets lost.

Medication & special food

If your pet needs medication or special food, be sure to pack adequate amounts to make the trip — and then some! Prepare a cooler especially for your pet for things that requires refrigeration.

PET TRANSPORTATION METHODS:

Should you hire a pet-moving service, or do it yourself?

Many moving companies are not allowed to move your pets. Buses and trains cannot transport pets unless they are medical service animals.

If your pet requires special handling and you cannot move him or her yourself, consider a professional pet service. Ask your vet for their recommendation.

Leash

Carry a leash in your car for pet breaks on the road. If your new home does not have a pet-safe fence, get a chain and leash for your dog to keep them safely in your yard if you have to wait for a fence to be built.

Pet carrier

If you’re traveling by airplane, any pet in the cabin must be in a pet carrier. In a car, many pets are less stressed in a carrier.

Familar toys & blankets

Just like people, your pet may have favorite toys, blankets, or comfort items. Try to give them the security of familiar surrounds, textures, smells by having their favorite things nearby.

food & treats

Avoid introducing anything new into their diet, food or treats. Normally, your pet will reduce their food intake during times of stress. Don’t try to coax them into eating.

test drive

If your pet is unaccustomed to travel, try taking them on a few test drives before the actual moving date. Some are sensitive to motion sickness but may adjust after a few outings. Check with your vet if this continues.


TIP: Provide your current vet with all your new contact info — destination address & phone. Many times a rabies tag can be traced back to the originating vet, and they will have updated records to help reunite you and your pet.


FIND A NEW VET, GROOMER, DAY CARE PROVIDER: Get referrals from friends, family, neighbors and your current vet. Read on-line reviews, visit facilities and follow your instincts!