How to Travel With Your Cat
It's time for cat travel
Let’s face it: there will come a time when you need to travel with your cat.
Whether you are taking a short trip to the vet, moving to a new house, or going on a vacation, you want to make sure that the travel would be pleasant and make it easier for you to reach your destination with the least amount of stress.
So, in this post, we want to know, “What are the best ways for us to travel with our fur baby (or babies)?” Here are a few great tips to keep in mind.
While it is quite tempting to let your cat loose inside the car, this is actually not safe.
First of all, your cat can easily become a furry projectile, ready to fly in any direction in case of an accident. Not only that, but the driver needs to focus on the road and not on the cat on his/her lap. Moreover, cats can sometimes be unpredictable especially when it is their first time traveling. Who knows, your cat might get wild, putting everyone at risk.
The solution? You need to bring your cat inside a carrier. The carrier should be big enough for your cat to be able to lie down, sit down, stand up, turn around, and stretch easily. You would then need to secure the carrier with a seatbelt.
Keep Your Cat Relaxed
Cats generally use past experiences to predict the future. Thus, it is not difficult to see why most cats prefer to stay at home. They don’t like new environments. They want to be in their comfort zone and not in a strange place like your car.
With this in mind, it is important for you to help your cat associate your car with fun and pleasurable experiences. The process of classical conditioning and desensitization play an important role here.
You can first bring your cat inside your car. Let them get familiar with the new place. Allow your cat to explore the car and leave her scent in it so it becomes a familiar place for them. By doing so, your cat should be more relaxed during your travel.
Consult With Your Veterinarian
Traveling with a cat on a long trip can be very challenging, not just for you, but also for your cat. If this is the case, you would need to check with your vet for various tips and possibly medical advice. Your vet can tell you whether your cat needs some medications against nausea, vomiting, or even nervous breakdowns. In fact, some cats are so scared or nervous to travel that vets sometimes prescribe sedatives. Consult with your vet and to get more ideas on how to safely and happily bring your cat with you.
Some Other Tips
- If you have time, drive short distances with your cat.
- Make sure your cat has the right tag on their collar.
- During long travels, plan to stop and have a break every 2-3 hours. This gives you a chance to give your cat water, access to a litter box, and break the monotony of traveling.
- Pack extra supplies, food, water, medication, and even other items useful during emergencies.
- Make sure your accommodation allows cats to stay.
- Bring along your cat's familiar belongings, like a bed and blankets, to make them more comfortable inside the car.
- Never leave your cat alone in the car for a long period of time, especially in hot weather.
- Bring extra blankets if you’re traveling during winter.
- It is advisable to not feed your pet a few hours before traveling. This may cause vomiting.
- If you need to let your cat out of the carrier, make sure you are fully parked.
- Bring necessary documentation with you such as health certificate and vaccination documents, just in case they are needed.
Have the Time of (Both of) your Lives!
When traveling with your cat, it is always helpful to expect for the worst and hope for the best. Like what was mentioned above, cats can be unpredictable at times. Even if you have brought your cat with you before, they can still become nervous during future travels. So be prepared. Don’t leave anything to chance. When you do so, you will surely have a happier and memorable trip with your feline friend!
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