Cats can cope very well with a move, without it being too much stress for them. As long as you prepare for the changeover gently.
Things to do for your cat a few days before the move
A cat scatters its territory with familiar landmarks by depositing its marks (pheromones) in different places (furniture, walls, curtains …). Identification pheromones or facial soothing pheromones are odorous substances emitted by small glands located between the corners of the lips and the base of the ears. They have a soothing function. A change of house leads to the loss of these soothing elements.
A few days before moving, plug in an electric synthetic pheromone diffuser (Feliway) in your new house or apartment. Ask your veterinarian for advice. You will be deceiving your cat by introducing it into an already marked territory. He will be able to make himself comfortable there in all serenity.
What you must do on moving day
In your new home, choose a room for your cat that you can keep closed. Leave your cat everything he needs (litter box, bowl, water and basket). Once he is confident, you can then let him access the other rooms.
If your house is still being renovated, wait to take your cat there. Instead, entrust him for a few days to friends.
What you should do for your cat after you move in
It will take a little time for your cat to feel totally comfortable in his new home. Leave the pheromone diffuser plugged in and, if necessary, buy a refill the following month.
If you are moving from an apartment to a house with a garden, do not allow your cat to go outside right away. Wait a few days. As soon as your cat has access to the outdoors, get into the habit of bringing him in at night. Of course, make sure that your cat is identified by tattoo or microchip in case he doesn’t come home.
If your cat has access to a garden, he might get bored if you move to an apartment. Enrich his new territory. Invest in a cat tree. Disseminate small toys (balls, mice) to keep him busy in your absence.
Be all the more vigilant if your cat is old, this loss of orientation could be really experienced as a trauma.
If, despite all your efforts, your cat becomes dirty, no longer eats, remains hidden, refuses to be petted and sleeps most of the time, these are signs that he is not doing well. Consult your veterinarian urgently.