Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Ask Noodles - Keeping your Cat Happy During a Move

A note from Max: Thanks to Noodles for another great column. This is a fate we all face from time to time, and it's good to have some advice on it. If you have a question for The Great Noodles, send it to him at TheGreatNoodles@gmail.com All questions are welcome.... from critters or humans. And now, heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeere's Noodles........

Help! We're moving again and my little princess, Miss Poofy shows signs of anxiety and confusion. She sees me packing our belongings and planning our move in 2 weeks. I fear that maybe Miss Poofy thinks we will be leaving her behind. She doesn't speak human, and I don't speak cat. How can I help and reassure her that she is coming with us? Obviously we would NEVER leave our Miss Poofy behind.

Thank you,
Miss Poofy's HuMommy

(twitter username for my cat: MissPoofy)

Miss Poofy’s mom! I’m so sorry for my delay on this. Sometimes I have quite the backlog, and sometimes I simply nap too much… Anyhow, that aside, I hope that your move went smoothly and the stress Miss Poofy endured throughout is now becoming a distant memory.

Lindsey (my sis) and I moved long distance from WAAAAY up north in Michigan all the way down here to Central Florida. It can be quite confusing. At first, all the boxes look fun. All the recesses of kitchen appliances, dishes and knick knacks to spelunk into and put cat hair on made the house so much fun! Not to mention the killer games of “King of the Boxes” you can play with your siblings.

Then, the big scary movers show up and trample through your house, removing all but a few items. This is often followed by a wrestling match with your humans who cram a pill in your mouth, stuff you into a box, and as you become drowsy you notice we’re all leaving the now empty home.

Two pics of us at our hotel here in Florida the day before we moved into our new apartment. In the distance you can see a pet store... so we knew it would be ok :)

I will say this about moving. It is change. Big change. And us cats are terrible at change. We fuss, cry, hide and carry on because we want everything to be about us all the time… always. Moving seems like it’s more about you humans than anything else. But that aside, I assure you we have no idea what’s going on… just that things are changing and that’s AWFUL unless the change involves more kibble and catnip.

Here’s my quick guide to moving with your favorite feline:

1. Get your pet’s medical and vaccination records and put them in one easy to find place.
If you need to stay at a hotel or get pulled over, you may be asked for these documents. Check with your vet before you leave to make sure you have all the records and permits you need. Also, when you get to your new home, you’ll have everything you need to set up with a new vet.

2. Collar and tag your felines with contact information.
I never wear a collar around the house, but I do have a chip. Still, if we’re on the road, we’re better off with a collar in the event we slip out of the car at a hotel or stop. A collar says to a person, “I own a human and here is their number. Can you call them for me please?”

3. Bring along some travel litter boxes.
My sis and I will hold our pee all the way till the hotel. We tried once getting out and going at a truck stop, but that was terrifying. Have a box handy for the trip that you can use and throw out at the hotel. You can get disposable litter bins at your local pet and grocery store. Super handy. Just don’t dump ‘em out in the back seat accidentally like our human did!

4. Keep us in a crate!
While we love to sit on your lap, if we aren’t used to travelling, we’re better off buckled up and secure. This is not just for our safety in the event of an accident, but also for yours. You don’t want to find me napping under your break pedal do you?

5. Ask your vet about tranquilizer options.
If it’ll be a long trip, consider taking a kitty sleeping pill. This can help you get through the long drive and rather than caterwauling the whole time, you can nap and dream of delicious mice.

6. When you get to the hotel, make sure your human puts out food, water and litter.
This is your critical peepee, poopoo and chow time. Also, hide under the bed to worry your humans into thinking you escaped the hotel room. They love that one.

7. When you get to your new home, stay in a small room until all the ruckus is over.
Those movers will be back and they’ll have to get those boxes back into place. It’s best not to watch ‘cause some of them are big, they sweat a lot and are noisy.

I know I’m too late to help you with your move, but perhaps your question can help another feline have a less stressful move to their new home.

Please send Miss Poofy my best wishes in her new home. I hope she’s found the best sunbeam locations already. J

Best Wishes,



Inigo Flufflebum and d'Artangan Rumblepurr said...

Once again, fantastic advice from Noodles the wonder cat!!!

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