08 Aug The Moving Day (Moving with Pets)
A true story by Kitty Poppins
Humans. You pets might have heard of them; you might even live with them. I know I do, and so does my associate Sherlock Bones. As much as I’d like to tell you otherwise, Sherlock Bones is nearly useless when it comes to controlling and training the people we live with. On rare occasions, he successfully swindles scraps of meat from the dinner table, however, this low-down type of cuisine (also known as “people food”) hardly meets the standards of my educated palate.
So, food aside—it’s up to me, Kitty Poppins, to rule our queendom and keep the people in it behaving in tolerable ways. Most days I prosper. Then there are days when all order and common sense flies out the window. Like it did recently, the day before yesterday. I wish this story wasn’t based on true events, but I’m here to tell you that all you’re about to read is 100% real.
Sherlock Bones calls it “The Box Day”. People call it “The Moving Day”. I call it “The Day of Black Magic”.
Day 1 – Boxes, Boxes, Boxes
I was minding my own business on the top of an old antique bureau, the one I like to work my claws on. It’s better to sharpen my paw-armaments only when people can’t see, otherwise they’ll surely make loud squealing noises and wave their hands wildly, like their little human minds have suddenly gone mad. In some scenarios this might be considered amusing, but it can seriously damage the quality of your nap time.
Just as I had finished my daily carving work, Sherlock Bones ran into the room his ears flopping wild, the whites of his eyes flickering.
Oh-my-bark! Oh-my-bark! Oh-my-bark!
Wagging my long tail from one side to another—twitching in annoyance from my naptime getting interrupted—I waited for him to elaborate.
Boxes Kitty, Boxes!
And just like that, his chaotic floppiness left the room. Now one thing you need to know about Sherlock Bones is that there’s not a thing in this world he wouldn’t overreact about. Car door slams outside? — oh my bark! A mailman rings the doorbell? — baaaark! People returning home after being gone for five minutes? —bark bark bark! You get the gist. But this time his turmoil seemed off the charts. So I decided to investigate.
The cardboard boxes spread across the floor would have normally made me somewhat satisfied and excited. So many wonderful places to stalk my prey from. But something was terribly wrong with each box I peeked into: they were all filled with people things! Now what good is a box if you can’t sit in it? My blood pressure was through the roof.
Sherlock Bones circled the boxes, his fluff-covered paws slipping on the bare floor. It made me notice another cause for alarm. Something outrageously wrong with my queendom: the carpet that was supposed to be under my royal litter box was gone. I circled around the rooms. All my favourite hiding spots were gone too! The plants on the windowsill, the bookshelf I can watch my entire queendom from the top of, all gone!
Loud sound, loud sound! Baaaark!
Sherlock Bones flew by me, taking cover under the staircase. I watched one of the outlandish humans run a red, plastic device over the boxes. The device closed the lids, and all boxes were piled into towers by the front door. I had heard of such thing, an invisible force that shuts close perfectly good boxes to sit on. People call it tape — I call it black magic. Hmmm, I wonder how many things I could see from the top of one of those towers?
I started to feel awful for Sherlock Bones. Shivering under the stairs, paws covering his eyes, he even missed the dog chow one of our humans poured into his bowl by the dishwasher. His water bowl remained untouched next to the overflowing food dish. I sat in front of the trembling dog, keeping guard. The spell our humans were under, the one making them run in and out of the front door, hauling away a box after another, must wear off eventually. Until then, I would do my best to convince Sherlock Bones our queendom would soon be restored and safe again.
And then in came the travel box.
Day 2 – On the Road
The travel box shook against Sherlock Bones’ enormous dog body sitting next to my prison. His long tongue hanging out, he eagerly watched the view flash by us. Now this is something I can’t comprehend: for this old fool, anything even slightly out of ordinary is a red flag. It’s something to bark at or run away from—the only exception being a whirring, rumbling metal box on wheels, where my highness got stuffed in against my will. I loathe traveling. I wished I had a bit of catnip to make this all bearable.
Plotting my revenge, I promised myself I’d work hard to double the amount of my beautiful carvings, as soon as I’d somehow relocate the furniture. Trembling slightly, I laid down and closed my eyes, imagining I was napping on my favourite bureau instead of a loud and bouncy plastic box from kitty hell.
Day 3 – A New Queendom
So, I found the furniture. I also found many, many empty boxes to sit in. This new place smells funny: like my litterbox after people clean it against my better wishes. But the carpets are here, and so is my royal litterbox. Only the queendom surrounding my belongings has changed its shape, smell, and feel. It makes me meow loudly, just so I can express my disapproval. And there’s still no catnip!
Sherlock Bones circles and paces around the people in the open space in front of my bureau. His simple doggy mind is herding them, making sure they won’t leave us in this odd new place. I’ve decided to stay put in my spot and observe, until I know it’s safe to proceed. The humans visit me, picking me up and carrying me around what I now assume to be my new queendom. I remain suspicious but must admit the new carving-ground seems more spacious, and Sherlock Bones will surely work on the lack of smell. I beeline to my food bowl and find it full. When’s the last time I ate anything?
With a belly full of chow and fresh water, I make myself comfortable under the new staircase. Sherlock Bones trots over and lays down next to me, panting, but a tad less nervous than before. Together we scan the new queendom and slowly let ourselves relax. Rolling our eyes at our humans and their mindless shenanigans, we put our heads down for some well-deserved naptime. At the end of the day—home is where our herd is.
Listen up, my four-legged friends. There will be times when your humans do strange things—things that make your tummies twist and give you the chills. I am here to tell you these things come and go, the scary changes will pass and the napping will go on. Take it from us, Kitty Poppins and Sherlock Bones: the moving day survivors.
How can you relieve your pets’ stress during a moving day? Aptus recommends you read about APTUS RELAX (https://www.aptuspet.com/product/aptus-relax/) calming chews and APTUS APTOBALANCE (https://www.aptuspet.com/product/aptus-aptobalance/) probiotics and prebiotics (all in one), as well as our checklist for stressful situations below. Happy moving (to you and your pets)!
Moving with Pets – 15 Things to Remember
- Pack as gradually as time permits
- Leave one room untouched until the last minute
- Pack a first night bag for your pet
- Get to know the new area (before you move in)
- Maintain your pet’s routine
- Contact your vet and schedule a check-up
- Find a new vet and veterinary emergency centre in the new area
- Update your tags and/or microchips with any new contact information
- Find a friend or a family member to pet sit for you during the move
- When traveling with your pet, bring food and water and make frequent stops
- Make sure your pet is eating and drinking enough
- Ensure that the new house and yard are safe before bringing your pet in
- Unpack one room first
- Keep your pet away from the action and mind the open doors
- Make new happy memories and associate your new home with positive emotions