Moving home directly impacts everyone in the family, with each person or animal reacting differently and requiring special care to ease the transition. Here are some handy tips to help moving home more pleasant for your entire family.
It’s easy to forget your basic needs when you are busy moving home and looking after the rest of your family, be sure to pack a bag for yourself containing: snacks, drinks, warmer clothes and anything else you may need. In order to get everything done you will need to stay focused on the job, but be considerate of other people’s moods and feelings. Moving home is a stressful time on all the family, so try not to take any sarcastic remarks or grumbles to heart.
All children enjoy having their familiar surroundings, equipped with their toys and belongings, it makes them feel safe and secure. During the packing and moving process children can become upset and irritable. Make sure you pack your child’s bedroom last so have their ‘comfort zone’ to play in and keep themselves entertained. Unpack this room first when you are in your new home. Pack a bag for each of your children that they can keep with them. Include toys, snacks, drinks, spare clothes (or warmer clothes) and their favourite belonging (for example a comfort blanket). When a child, particularly a small child, see’s all their belongings disappear into boxes, it is this bag that will make them feel safe, furthermore it will keep them occupied.
• Dogs and cats: On moving day keep your pet locked safely in a room (with food, water and a litter tray). Put your pet in the carrier at the latest possible moment. When you arrive at your new property, put your pet carrier in a lockable room, open the carrier and allow your pet to come out in their own time. Give your pet something to eat, perhaps a treat and leave them undisturbed in this room while you start unpacking. Your pet may want to stay in this room for a day or two as they may be overwhelmed with the new surroundings, try leaving the door open and letting them come out in their own time. Try to keep your pet indoors for 3 weeks after moving into your new home, it is important that they familiarise themselves with the new house first. It is common for cats especially to find their way back to their old house if they are let outside too soon. When you decide to let your pet outside, do it before the next mealtime, so that your pet is hungry and you can entice it back inside with food. Open the door and walk out, enticing them with you (don’t pick your pet up and take it outside). Only let your cat out for short intervals to start with until they start to become familiar with their new surroundings.
• Birds: Some birds become distressed when moved. Put them in the carrier in plenty of time for them time to get used to it and before you move them cover them with a blanket. Make sure they are secure during transportation. If your bird looks unwell after being moved take it to the vet.
• Fish: the most difficult of all pets to move, fish can be quite temperamental and a move could easily give you one or more fatalities. What to do: 3 days before the move, put your fish into a smaller tank (filled mainly with the water from the tank they were in), drain your main tank and transport it to your new property and set it up. Running the filtration system and heaters will ensure the tank is ready to receive the fish and give you time to ensure you have the right Ph balance etc. On the day of the move bag the fish up (again in the water from the tank they have been in), wrap the bag in paper to retain some of the heat and ensure you have kept as much air in the bag as possible. At the new property place the bags in the water of the new tank so that they float there, and leave for at least 30 minutes. Cut open the bags and release both the fish and the water into the new tank.