Travelling With Your Cat

Travelling With Your Cat January 25, 2016

Wanting to travel with your cat? Planning an overseas relocation with kitty? Nadia Crighton hands out some much needed advice to keep your feline friend comfortable along the way.

It’s no surprise to cat owners that most cats hate traveling. In fact the only time the dreaded cat carrier is brought into view is clearly signaling a trip to the vet…so needless to say most kitty-cats hate the site of their cat carrier. But now you are planning an extended stay overseas and your cat is coming with you and they will be spending a decent amount of time in the cat carrier? Whatever the reason for your cats travels, ensuring they are doing it in comfort is paramount. Here are something’s to consider:

Cat Carriers
It’s important to have the right cat carrier for the job. If you are heading international and have two cats (that get along) consider purchasing a double cat carrier (these look like bunk-beds and are rather tall). This will allow your cats to travel together for companionship, while also allowing extra room to move. These are great when cats are traveling on airplanes as the experience can be a little scary so having their buddy to curl up next to can really help. Also pop some of your clothing or bedding into the cage. Your scent will also calm your cat. If you have a cat that hates their cat carrier have a look at the great tips below in teaching your cat to love its cat traveling home. But how do you choose the right cat carrier for your needs?

  • Make sure it is not too big, or too small for your pet. Certain cat breeds will require different sized cat carriers.
  • Soft or hard? A soft cat carrier can be great for those quick trips to the vet, but on a long trip consider a hard cat carrier. The hard handle can be put though a seatbelt for when traveling in the car for extra safety, plus your cat will appreciate having something solid to lean up against.
  • Cats are curious and they love to see. Most (who have been taught to love their cat carrier) will love those new funky cat carriers with large windows at the front. This will help your cat not feel restricted in their surroundings. If your cat hates their cat carrier and howls constantly, consider partly covering the cage with a pillowcase.

Cat Travels
Taking your cat away to the beach house or holiday home is not an unusual occurrence in today’s world. Many cats also fly across the globe on a daily basis. Making your cat comfortable during this travel time is important. You can consider:

  • Teaching your cat how to handle a harness so you can take toilet break along the way.
  • Pop some baby bum wipes in the car alongside a plastic bag and some new bedding just in case of an accident.
  • Do not feed your cat before a long trip. Just offer water and take some food with you so when you arrive you can feed your pet. This can help with cat motion sickness.

So your cat hates the cat carrier as they associate it with a trip to the vet? Let’s abolish this:

  1. Purchase a new cat carrier, one with a large widow at the front instead of bars. It’s important you can completely unclick the lid and remove it.
  2. Remove the lid and line the bottom with a small old towel.
  3. Buy some tuna or salmon (a treat food your cat simply loves).
  4. With the lid off start feeding your cat inside the cat carrier and leave it out all day (remember to keep the lid off for the first week).
  5. After a week pop the lid on and continue to feed your cat inside the box.
  6. After two weeks have passed (one with lid off and one with the lid on) your cat will now only have positive experiences with the cat carrier.
  7. Pop them into the cat carrier and close the lid. Go for a little walk, and then let them out.

More on what to bring when travelling with your pet found here.