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March 27, 2006

Moving with birds

How smooth and easy your move with the bird will be, solely depends on the degree of socialization of your pet. Some birds, frequently exposed to new situation, will take the move easily. On the other hands there are birds which will get nervous, stressed and will be squawking and rushing around their carrier. Most traumatic the move will be for older parrots that haven't been socialized well. The most important thing you can do to make tour bird feel secure and safe during the move is to keep its daily routine as usual as possible. Feed it at times the bird got used to, talk to it regularly. Birds are like children - they have their own personality and habits that are hard and painful to break.


Long before the move check the bird at your veterenerian for any diseases that can expose during the stressful situation of the move. If you noticed during the move that the bird started feather picking, it ussually happens when the bird is in stress, bring it to the veterenerian immediately before it turned to a habit which can't be broken. Also, if you are moving interstate or abroad check what health certificates and proof of vaccination is required. Usually no quarantine is required for the birds originated from the US but different countries have different policies regarding this issue, so you better check it before you move. For more detailed information on each state requirement for pet's travel go to USDA Veterinary Services .

Moving local, you can transport your bird in its cage. Be sure you removed all the swings and toys from it lest the bird should get hurt. Don't leave food and water trays inside the cage to avoid spilling, but don't forget to feed and water you pet regularly during the move. It is recommended you cover the cage with a blanket to avoid drafts and sustain proper temperature around - not too cold and not too hot. Be extremely careful when opening the cage as it can easily escape from you.

Moving long distance, prepare the carrier for the bird. Let your pet get used to it: put some treats for your bird inside the carrier, talk to it encouragingly while it is inside. You need to get the bird acquainted with the carrier gradually, establishing pleasant associations for your pet with it.

Upon arrival to a new home put the bird's cage in surroundings close to those you had in your old home. Avoid drafts, opened windows, stoves and ceiling fans when finding the place to put the cage. As a bird is flocking animal, be sure it can see all the activities of your family from the spot you put it in, though having some privacy of its own. Don't change the bird's toys for a while and maintain it usual day routine.

For trusted information about moving with your pet see what American Veterinary Medical Association recommends on pet travelling; check what American Society For The Prevention Of Cruelty To Animals says about moving pets by car and by plane . See what regulations and recommendations do US Customs and Board Protectic and US Department of State have regarding moving your pet abroad. Also if you are determined to move abroad get some information on international pet passport . Finally, Delta and NWA websites will help you to get specific information for pet airtravel.

Posted by ezm at 05:05 PM | Comments (0)

March 20, 2006

Moving with Fish

It is often risky and impractical to try to move fish. Fish are most sensible to to temperature changes that can hardly be avoidable during a move. So if they don't have any special sentimental value to you - just don't move them. Many aquarium stores may accept them and even offer a store credit, which you can use in another location close to the place you moved in. But if you don't have this option here are some suggestions you may consider during your move:

Firstly, you need to take fish out of the aquarium and move them separately. Tanks are rarely built to withstand the stress of a move, especially with water inside. So you need to drain it after, of course, you finished putting all your fish in carrying containers. The main concern when moving a fishtank is its filtration system. The aerobic bacteria needed to preserve the life cycle of an aquarium and the life of fish starts to die after few hours without a flow of oxygen-laden water. It is not as crucial when you move short distance. What you need is to move about half of the water you've had in you fishtank to a new location to make sure the colony of aerobic bacteria survive. If you are moving long distance you'll have to set up the tank exactly like a new one at your destination including one week delay.

Disassemble your aquarium before the move; heaters, pumps, filters and other media should be packed separately like fragile items. The tank itself should be in bubble wrap and packed in moving blankets. If possible, it is better not to use a moving van for transporting a fishtank but to put it in a trunk of your car.

Provided you are moving local, the actual move of your tank can take about a week with all the neccessary precautions making sure your beloved fish won't sufer from the New Tank Syndrome. During this period you can put them either into your friend's tank or into the pet store aquarium. Some pet stores do it for free, some can even offer additional services like packing and air shipping your fish for additional fees.

Now we came close to the actual packing and moving of the fish. Long before the move prepare the accessories you'll need to move your fish. It might be styrofoam boxes, polythene bags, a cooler or other compartmentalized container. Take the fish out of the aquarium 15 minutes before you'll drain it and put them in bags or styrofoam boxes: one fish per each container. Fill the fish containers with tank water and don't forget that about a half of a container space should be left for the air pocket. Don't feed your fish 24 hours before the move in order to make water in the containers as clean as possible. As a matter of fact, fish would feel too stressed to eat during the whole move - so don't worry about feeding them; fish can live more than a week without food. Seal the styrofoam boxes with lids and bags - with rubber bands; to reduce the chance of leaking you can double bag your fish. Put the water plants in the separate containers too - they also need to be wet during the move. After you've finished packing the fish put all the bags with your pets into a container that can hold steady temperature during the whole period of the move - it might be a cooler. If you are moving far - it might be a good suggestion to get a battery powered air pump and occasionally change air in fish containers.

When you arrive to the place you're moving in - set up the aquarium first. Add gravel, preferably from your old home; gravel contains ammonia-eating bacterias that are crucial for the aquarium not to go through New Tank Syndrome. Then fill the tank with the water you brought from the old place adding some chlorine remover. Fill the tank up with tap water of proper temperature, and turn on the filters. As the water is clearing out you may add a fish or two and watch closely for their reaction. It is absolutely normal for fish to panic and breathe harder in the new surroundings. But if a fish lies on the side and doesn't move for few seconds put it back to a travelling container and check the tank for the proper temperature and water chemistry. Watch your fish and regularly check the tank during the first week to be sure your beloved ones haven't got any disease.

For trusted information about moving with your pet see what American Veterinary Medical Association recommends on pet travelling; check what American Society For The Prevention Of Cruelty To Animals says about moving pets by car and by plane . See what regulations and recommendations do US Customs and Board Protectic and US Department of State have regarding moving your pet abroad. Also if you are determined to move abroad get some information on international pet passport . Finally, Delta and NWA websites will help you to get specific information for pet airtravel.

Posted by ezm at 09:10 PM | Comments (0)

March 17, 2006

Moving with Cats

You know how stressful a move can be, and now imagine how your cat can feel on seeing you packing boxes and movers wrapping the furniture and taking it away. Cats are territorial animals and feel the change of environment much stronger than dogs. So for the happiness and safety of your pet, be sure to spare some of your time for him during the move. One of the best ways to reduce you cat’s stress on a moving day is regular communication with him throughout the whole process of the move. Here are some practical tips to lessen the shock of the move for your cat and for you.

The simplest solution to make the move smoother and ensuring that the cat won’t escape amid the confusion of the move is to board the cat in a cattery close to your new home, provided you are moving locally. If you don’t have such an option than here are the steps to make your move as painless for the pet as possible.

Prepare the carrier for you cat. It should have good ventilation and strong body. Get your cat used to it before the move day. Usually cats associate carrier with unpleasant things like going to a veterinarian or to a groom. That’s why it is better to change this association to a more pleasant one, for example by putting there some treats for your cat. Putting a little blanket or something else from the house you are moving out inside the carrier would also make your cat feel secure and at home.

Prepare the id tag for you cat and ensure that your pet wears it during the whole move period. Put the name of your cat, your telephone number and the address you are moving to. Make a picture of the cat before the moving day in case your cat gets lost during the upheaval of the move.

On the actual day of the move out lock your cat in an empty room. Make sure that the moving men won’t come in there for any boxes or furniture. Cats usually don’t like any confusion and disruption in the household that’s why they sometimes prefer to leave home and run away, therefore the door to the cat’s room should be locked and have a "Don’t Open" sign. Put all the cat’s belongings in there and don’t let the movers load them in a moving van - it would be better if you take it on your own.

In case you are traveling to your new home by car, do some preparation regarding your cat. Get it gradually used to a car by making short trips long before the move day. Never leave your pet alone in the car. Don’t worry much if the cat doesn’t eat during the trip - it happens due to cat’s anxiety about the move, but be sure it drinks regularly. And try to avoid letting the cat out of the carrier. A cat is much more difficult to find than a dog in case it gets lost in the moving process. Check the pet friendly hotels you can stop at on your way.

Traveling by air, be sure your cat wears id tag and also rabies tag as most states require it. Most airlines allow cats in the airliner cabin in a proper carrier. You can check with Delta Airline recommendations on shipping your pet. And don’t let the cat out of the carrier until you get home.

Before moving take all the health records of your pet from the current veterinarian to transfer them to a new one. Find out the pet regulations in the area you are moving in ( you can use the website of USDA Veterinary Services) and check if pets allowed in your new home. If you know your cat gets very anxious and excited during a move check with the veterinarian - he might prescribe small doses of sedative. You get a word about using sedatives from American Veterinary Medical Association

On the move in day lock your cat in a spare room again with no access of the moving men to it. Bring the cat’s belongings in first and make sure the cat knows where they are.

Get the cat acquainted with the new home gradually: room after the room - so it won’t be overwhelmed by the new impressions. If you let your pet roam around the strange surroundings on its own it might get frightened.

Don’t change the regular routine of a day for your cat throughout the whole move; remember the sense of being secure is the most important for your pet.

For trusted information about moving with your pet see what American Veterinary Medical Association recommends on pet travelling; check what American Society For The Prevention Of Cruelty To Animals says about moving pets by car and by plane . See what regulations and recommendations do US Customs and Board Protectic and US Department of State have regarding moving your pet abroad. Also if you are determined to move abroad get some information on international pet passport . Finally, Delta and NWA websites will help you to get specific information for pet airtravel.

Posted by ezm at 11:42 PM | Comments (0)

Moving with Dogs

Often when we move, we’re so busy with packing and preparing for the move that we forget to give proper attention to our pets. But we shouldn’t. For dogs, like for many other pets, a move to a place with new sights, sounds and especially smells can be a challenge or even a trauma. Especially it concerns dogs which never leave the house but for a veterinary clinic. It’s harder for them to adjust than for the dogs that are used to new experiences going out every day. The most important thing in moving with a dog is to make it feel as secure, calm and comfortable as you can, otherwise your move can turn to nightmare. The following suggestions will make the dog moving easier:

Start packing 1 or 2 week before the actual day of the move in order not to get a dog overly excited when you try to pack everything in a rush during the last couple of days before movers arrive. Do not pack your dog’s favorite toys or move the bedding if possible. Sudden change of safety environment will make your dog anxious and may lead to unpredictable behavior.

Don’t change the feeding schedule of your dog and keep doing the regular walks with it on, before and after the move.

If the place you are moving to is located not far from the place you are moving from, try bringing your dog there so it can explore new sights, sounds and smells during the walks. In this case the change of moving won’t be as stressful for your pet.

Prepare the new id tag for you dog and be sure that the dog wears it on the day of the move, especially if you’re moving long distance. This is in case the dog gets scared and runs away or gets lost in the turmoil of the move.

It is strongly recommended that you leave your dog at your neighbors’, friends’ or relatives’ your dog is familiar with on the day of the move. If you have to use a pet care center for the move day. This will serve several purposes:

a) - the dog will not feel invaded, threatened by seeing the strange people entering its space. This can trigger the aggressive behavior and may lead to accidents if the dog encounters movers; dog can damage the furniture if it is locked in a room. Other dogs may feel frightened and this can lead to runny stomach and accidents of other sort.

b) you do not have to tend to him while the moving men are around packing your household goods and loading the van.

c) moving men will not be distracted or scared to do their job and this will also result in a faster and more efficient move.

If you have no other option - then lock your dog in a room where it feels comfortable and make sure the dog has its favorite toys and a bed. Try to and make sure the room is empty of the boxes and furniture your movers will need to take. Often dog’s anxiety can turn to aggressiveness to strangers so it might be even better to put a sign on the door like "Dog. Do Not Open." so your pet won’t be disturbed and excited by the sight of the moving men.

Transporting the dog to a new place can also be problematic, unless it is so close so you can walk there. Do not put your dog in the back of the truck. When truck body is closed, conditions are very adverse: it is dark, noisy and scary. Shipment may shift, boxes and furniture might fall. It is extremely hot inside in the summer.

If you do not have a car - then use a pet-friendly taxi to get you to the moving destination with a dog. When moving your dog by car, make sure you prepared a sheet or a blanket for the car seats, paper towels, food and drink if the trip takes more than two hours. If you’re traveling far, don’t feed the dog at least 3 hours before the trip and don’t forget to make stops every 2 hours to get some fresh air and drink for you pet. You can put one of the favorite toys of your dog in the car for it to relax. Check the pet friendly hotels you can stop at on your way.

If you are traveling by air, take into consideration that no airline can guarantee acceptance of an animal it has not seen. Make sure you’ve got all the necessary documentations, proper carrier markings and sizing, and food and drink for the flight. You can check with Delta Airline recommendations on shipping your pet.

Usually interstate health certificates for dogs have to be obtained before entering most states. Rabies vaccine is required for dogs to enter most states. Hawaii even requires that dogs be quarantined for the period of 120 days. Be sure your pet wears identification tags with your pet’s name and description, your name, address and phone number; vaccination tags are often required as well. For more detailed information on each state requirement for pet's travel go to USDA Veterinary Services .

Airlines generally transport animals in the cargo compartment of the plane, but small dogs are allowed to travel in airliner cabin with their owners, provided they are placed in an approved carrier that will feet under the seat. Dog kennels should be roomy enough to allow you pet sit, stand and lie naturally; they must be easy to open, strong enough and leak proof; kennels should have proper ventilation: at least 14% of the total wall space and at least one third of the openings must be located on to the top of the kennel with the rims on the sides to provide at least an inch of clearance in case the opening is blocked by another cargo. The kennel should have handles to lift it and marked "live animals" with the directional arrows showing the proper position of the kennel. Also the instructions for feeding and watering you pet should be attached to the kennel. Food and water must be provided for puppies every 12 hours and for mature dogs should be fed every 24 hours and given water every 12 hours.

Feed your animals no less then 3 hours before the flight and take it for a long walk. It would be better if you arrive to the airport early so you have enough time to take care of your pet according to the airline regulations. When you reserve the flight make sure it has as few stops and transfers as possible and try to avoid peak travel periods. Also when you make your reservation tell the airline directly that you are traveling with the dog and ask what requirements they have. The law is changing and airlines often require animals to be prepared by professional transport companies with all necessary documentations.

If you are planning to use sedative for your pet consult your veterinarian to be on the safe side. Generally it is not advised to use sedatives because animals lose balance and control over their bodies what may hurt them during turbulence or other unstable conditions of a plane. You get a word about using sedatives from American Veterinary Medical Association .

At the place you move in, find again the small and comfortable room for your dog to lock it in while the moving men unload the truck.

Make sure your pet knows where his stuff is: bed, crate, litter box, toys, eating area. And don’t interrupt the day routine for you dog. Give the dog the water from the previous home, gradually mixing it with the water in the new one. Leave as little surprises for it as possible. Get your dog acquainted with the new home gradually: don’t let it roam around everywhere at once.

Keep the dog at home for few days for them to adapt before letting it out to the street. Try not to leave the new home to eat out at first, do it at home so your pet won’t feel forsaken.

And, lastly, be human - don’t punish your pet for initial misbehavior, find some way to reduce their stress. But should your dog leave some "accidents", be quick to get rid of it, so the odor won’t attract it again.

For trusted information about moving with your pet see what American Veterinary Medical Association recommends on pet travelling; check what American Society For The Prevention Of Cruelty To Animals says about moving pets by car and by plane . See what regulations and recommendations do US Customs and Board Protectic and US Department of State have regarding moving your pet abroad. Also if you are determined to move abroad get some information on international pet passport . Finally, Delta and NWA websites will help you to get specific information for pet airtravel.

Posted by ezm at 11:37 PM | Comments (0)