Four tips when moving house with pets

Moving house is an exciting moment for the whole family but it can be stressful for your pets. A big change like a house move could lead to behavioural problems or anxiety for your furry friends. However, with a little preparation and consideration you can make things much easier for your dog or cat to keep them calm and happy in their new surroundings.

1. Time to explore

When a cat discovers its new home, it needs time. We recommend that you do not distract it by putting food in their bowls right away or giving them treats. Let your cat explore their new environment first. Try and keep cats indoors for at least 2 weeks to get used to their new house.

2. Stick to routines
The fear of being abandoned is greater in dogs than cats but both need to be assured you are taking them with you to your new house. Keep your routines the same (especially if you have a dog) such as sticking to the same hour for food and walks will reassure your pet that while their surroundings may have changed, nothing else has within your family.

3. Allocate new spaces
Dogs are clever creatures and will understand the family is packing. To avoid making your pet feel stressed make sure one family member is solely responsible for them. This can make them feel more secure amongst all the upheaval of moving. Prepare a dedicated space for your pet as soon as you get into your new house. Make it cosy with things that they know and love (their bed and toys for example). It will make your pet feel welcome and reassure them that they have a place in this new habitat. Cats’ feeding areas and litter trays should be placed in separate locations, and make sure they have somewhere quiet to go for the latter.

4. Establish their territory
Cats are territorial. When you move house, the other cats from the neighbourhood might already consider your garden their territory. To give your cat a confidence boost, empty the contents of their litter box around your garden. This will mark the territory with their scent, help them settle in and also send a clear signal to other neighborhood cats.

There we have four simple things that can make a huge difference to how comfortable your pets feel in your new home. 

As well as preparing your pets and family for the move, you'll need to ensure that you have the right contents and/or building insurance for your new place. Our trusted insurance partner, RSA believe that your home and lifestyle is as individual as you are, and that your home insurance should be just as personal. Their 'Take Your Pick' Home Insurance lets you build a policy that covers the things you love, while only paying for what you need. If you are a qualifying member* of our loyalty programme, Member Rewards, you will receive £25 cashback on your new home insurance policy. 

*To qualify for cashback you need to have a savings balance of at least £500 and have either held one of our savings accounts for at least the last 12 months or currently have a Nottingham Building Society mortgage - for full terms and conditions visit

Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance plc underwrite and administer Nottingham Building Society Take Your Pick home insurance and are authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority; registered No. 202323. St Mark’s Court, Chart Way, Horsham, West Sussex RH12 1XL. Registered in England and Wales No. 93792.


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