There are a few pheromone sprays available at pet stores that when sprayed into the carrier, help calm and relax kitty. The pheromone is the scent that mama cats have during nursing.
Also, my experience has been to do with more of a "last out, last in" practice. This means getting a few things from the old home in place at the new home first. Have a secure place for kitty to "hole up" in. As you drive to your new home, have kitty with you, so she knows she's part of the plan. Then when you get to the new house, tuck the carrier between some boxes so that she feels safe. Have food, water and "facilities" in place and ready. Then open the carrier. If kitty normally sleeps with you, try and have the bed made and ready for a good snuggle.
Some cats will be ready to walk out and explore, some will take a few days to feel safe. Let them decide. Just keep talking to them, but let them take the first step. The secret is to let them think that this was all their decision!
By Maile from Onalaska, WA
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