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Moving next week ... advice please!

Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by TiggersDad, Nov 21, 2018.


  1. TiggersDad

    TiggersDad PetForums Newbie

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    Hi all

    I am 'Dad' to Tigger a 5 year old rescue cat I have had for 2 years now. He is a lovely boy and sleeps indoors and also loves his garden although he is never gone for more than an hour or 2 at a time.

    Due to having to move I am worried about how he will be as I am currently in a 2 bed bungalow with garden and having to move to a small ground floor flat with no garden. The only access to the outside is the front door and small window from kitchen to a communal garden.

    I know he has to stay in around 3 weeks which he won't like but I know it has to be done but when I do let him out I guess I should do this before he has eaten? Also, is it worth showing him the front door or have a table where he can jump from window down to the communal garden and back in again?

    I am worried sick he will get lost but I know he is generally a sensible cat so should I also let him out before food as well as play with him and his toys well before letting him out? He will have his food, water and litter tray nearby and a bed and sofa to sleep on if he wants to after doing what I expect a lot of roaming and sniffing and exploring!

    The property is half the size he is used to and no garden of his own which is my main worry but although there is no magic formula for letting him out anything else I can do to calm myself from thoughts of danger and him getting lost? I suffer with anxiety and OCD so this is making me worse as well.

    Thank you all

    Edit: I forgot to say, Tigger has insurance and is microchipped - I am updating the details for both after I have moved in
     
  2. Cully

    Cully PetForums VIP

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    I think you've got a few options here.
    As you are going to have to keep him in for a few weeks he will get accustomed to being an indoor cat and you may find, if given enough to occupy him, that he isn't really bothered about going outside.
    If you really want him to have outdoor exercise you could use the time he's kept inside to train him to a harness and lead. That way he gets to go out, but under your supervision.
    To continue life as an outdoor cat you should consider cat proofing the area around your home, or at least erecting a cat run, so he has safe access outside.
    Just because a cat is used to spending long periods outside doesn't mean they can't enjoy an indoor life only if it should become necessary. That way it will resolve your concern regarding his safety following your move.
     
  3. TiggersDad

    TiggersDad PetForums Newbie

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    It is a rented place so no option to erect anything as other people use the area. I did think that as it is really cold from now until at least February he may become an indoor cat and I guess the only way to monitor that is to so just that, see how he reacts. He loves his food so if he has a bed or sofa to sleep on and his food and water as well as somewhere to do his business he may adapt. Luckily being the winter no windows will be open so that is another good thing with him not being able to escape!

    There will be myself and two others in the family so if people need to go out he at least won't be alone. We will also make sure he gets treats and we play with him so he is kept occupied/amused.

    It is a worry as when I have moved before with other cats they have always had their own garden. Tigger is a rescue and when he came to us he hid away a few days then adapted and went outside after 2 weeks and came back fine
     
  4. Minuscule

    Minuscule PetForums Senior

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    I have the same kind of concerns as my cat likes taking the fresh air in the courtyard in the house I am renting. He is always supervised but I will move to a flat and the best case scenario would probably be having a balcony so I hope I can have one, can secure it with nets etc and he will cope ok... Try not to worry too much, the good thing is that he doesn't live outside all the time, so he is already used to being indoors.
    Good luck with your move!
     
  5. TiggersDad

    TiggersDad PetForums Newbie

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    Thank you, I am just so stressed at the moment and this is an additional worry. I guess we should move in (Nov 26th) and keep him in until after Xmas and if the weather is really bad (I am UK in case anyone here is overseas) he won't want to go out anyway as he hates the wind and cold.
     
  6. Minuscule

    Minuscule PetForums Senior

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    He will be okay, try to relax as he will feel your stress. Get a pet remedy diffuser, lots of toys to keep him entertained and maybe a cat tree. Make your new flat cat friendly to help him feel good in his new environment.
    I know what stress is like, I am also anxious, but you have to stay positive and stop imagining the worst possible outcomes. They will probably never happen (I should listen and follow my own advice) and it'll be all behind you very soon.
     
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  7. TiggersDad

    TiggersDad PetForums Newbie

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    Thank you. As you are aware if you suffer like I do then anxiety is in overdrive not only with a move and all it entails but worrying about my Tigger who relies on the family to look after him. On the move day we intend to keep him in a room that has already been emptied with his toys and litter tray and some food so once it is all sorted (or most of it) we can put him in his box and get him to the new place. Luckily it is only 6 miles away.
     
  8. Cully

    Cully PetForums VIP

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    My suggestions for your move were based mainly on the need to address your stress as I also get stressed very easily, usually about nothing, so I do understand.
    That's a pity about your new place being rented, so not much likelihood of a garden or an outdoor catio. That would have pretty much solved the stress problem.
    But as @Minuscule said, it's important to catify your flat to make it a place he wants to be. When you move you will make the new flat to your liking with things you are happy to have around you, furniture, TV, soft furnishings etc. So do the same for him to make him feel at home and still a member of your family, with beds, scratchers and toys etc.
    When you move I would give him a safe refuge in just one room while the actual chaos of the moving takes place. Then let him take things at his own pace, with plenty of reassurance from you all.
    I'm sure it will all go more smoothly than you're expecting and I wish you the best of luck.
     
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  9. Minuscule

    Minuscule PetForums Senior

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    @TiggersDad if it makes you feel less alone in this, I am moving country with my cat in just over two weeks, and I will also have to leave him with my parents' for some time. For someone who stresses about every tiny detail, it's a big thing.
    There are things you have no control over and they will happen no matter what. The only thing you can do at this stage is to plan your move, make sure your kitty has everything you can possibly give him so he is comfortable. If you had a garden of your own in your new place, you would still need to keep your cat in for a while so the process at the start would be the same. Take it easy, you will see how that goes and you can ask for more advice here if any issue arises, in time, but it might be that your cat copes ok and is not bothered with not going out.
    Make the inside cosy for him (cat trees, beds and dens, scratching posts) and buy stuff to help him with the stress (zylkene, calming spot-on, feliway/pet remedy diffuser etc). Take some time off if you can to help him settle.
    Later, why not buying him a cat jacket and try to train him on the lead?
    Also, I wouldn't let him free roam but if this is what you intended with your own garden, can I ask you what difference it makes whether it is a communal garden or your own? Your cat won't know that.
     
    #9 Minuscule, Nov 22, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2018
  10. Cully

    Cully PetForums VIP

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    I think he may have been referring to my comment about cat proofing his garden. He might have neighbours who object if it's communa.l
     
  11. Minuscule

    Minuscule PetForums Senior

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    Oh yeah about cat proofing. But was his old garden cat proofed? (Not that I would allow my cat to roam freely).
     
  12. TiggersDad

    TiggersDad PetForums Newbie

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    Hi, at old place it was our own garden but he wandered down other gardens and came back after around 2 hours. As this is a communal garden the other residents may object to him being there and he may be scared off. We will have a small outside space at the front which he could go in but as mentioned before the only access is either front door to main road or out kitchen window onto a table and back in same way. I had a cat a long time ago that done this but all cats are different.

    As you say, he may adapt to being indoors especially as it will be bitterly cold. I guess I just shouldn't stress and take it one day at a time.

    For the move itself, one room has already been cleared so on move day we will put him in there with his food, water, toys and litter tray and then take him as the last thing to do in a car in his box with comfy soft towel.

    He loves catnip and we have a spray we put on his toys that he plays with kicking them and licking and biting them so once in the new place and after he has a nose around we will feed him and play with him. No doubt he will be a bit confused at first but when we first got him it took about 2-3 days before he settled.

    I am a born worrier but I am sure he will be fine
     
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  13. Cully

    Cully PetForums VIP

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    It sounds as if you have everything under control but are getting a bit panicky now the move is imminent. Which is perfectly understandable.
    Just do as you have said and it will all be okay.
    The only thing I would suggest different is to maybe confine him to just one room for a few days to give him a chance to settle and feel safe.
    Also make sure to bring his microchip details up to date asap, and if he wears a collar, try attaching a phone number to it, 'just in case'. The more you do to ensure his safety, the easier you will feel. And if you are relaxed, then he will be too.
     
  14. TiggersDad

    TiggersDad PetForums Newbie

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    I have his chip and insurance details to change after we have moved. As he won't be outside there is less danger but I have it all in my diary to do. He has never had a collar as his previous owner (cat rescue) said he never got on with it (he is a large cat as well). As the place he will be in is small we will let him roam as we did in his current place so he can get his bearings - he will also have his litter tray and food handy.

    We have planned move day. On the day he will be in one room with all his stuff and I will go to new place with removal people and my Father as we have a heating engineer and broadband engineer visiting same day (I know, all go!) Tigger will stay at our old address with my Mother so the unloading and engineer work at new place can be done with doors open etc. Once everything is in and we are more settled and it is darker we will bring Tigger to the new place so the sofa and beds are readily available.

    We have tenancy of our current address for 2 weeks after moving to new place so intend getting the smaller items ourselves in cars once moved in but will ensure someone is always with Tigger at the new place.

    We have all agreed at home that Tigger should stay safe at old address until it has calmed down as there will be removal men, 2 engineers and myself and Father at new place so too much for him to take in.
     
  15. Cully

    Cully PetForums VIP

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    Sounds like you're all ready, so I hope everything goes well for you.
    If you're anything like me you worry yourself silly then look back on the event and wonder what all the fuss was about lol.
    Good luck, and let us know how he has settled.
     
  16. TiggersDad

    TiggersDad PetForums Newbie

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    Thank you! Born worrier, diagnosed with anxiety, loads to do and sort and as organised as I feel I still worry and make myself ill.

    I am sure Tigger will be fine. He will get his treats as well and we will keep him nice and warm and his belly full!
     
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  17. Minuscule

    Minuscule PetForums Senior

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    Stick to your plan and stop torturing yourself, it sounds like it's all well planned and organised.
    When I moved a few months ago I did like you, a room at the old place with all his stuff, did all the move to the new place and went back to pick up Ren and his things at the end of the day.

    That will never stop us worrying about everything, but at least there are less unknown factors.
     
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  18. TiggersDad

    TiggersDad PetForums Newbie

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    I know, gotta stop worrying - at least he will have his safety and his stuff whilst everything is going on and when he arrives at the new place there will be more calm albeit strange to all of us there!
     
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  19. TiggersDad

    TiggersDad PetForums Newbie

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    Hi all, just to update you all 2 weeks after the move.

    Tigger is fine - he settled really well and sleeps on the bed and sofa and is eating fine. We can see he is really bored as he has not been out but his general mood seems OK. I have not changed his chip address yet so he won't be going out until the new year anyway but as it is really cold I don't even think he wants to. He knows the front door and has meowed at it but certainly no stress reaction and scratching, climbing and trying in desperation to get out so he may even settle as an indoor cat.

    As well as this nothing but aggro, heating problems, plumbing problems, no internet/landline as fault with landline and waiting for Open reach to sort so I have not even relaxed yet (using WiFi in costa coffee in town at the moment)

    Hope you are all well
     
  20. Cully

    Cully PetForums VIP

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    Thanks for letting us know. So pleased it all went well and Tigger is settling in
     
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