Cats do not necessarily enjoy leaving the safety and security of home. They tend to be home bodies. Cats prefer their known territory. However, it is possible to travel with your cat, if you follow a simple plan to keep them safe and comfortable.
Consider whether your cat’s carrier is appropriate and comfortable for the type of traveling you are planning. If traveling by car, always keep your cat securely in their carrier. Place the carrier in a safe spot inside the vehicle where there is good air flow and proper ventilation. Be sure to withhold food for approximately four to five hours before departure.
Be prepared for your cat’s constant meowing by speaking to her calmly and in a reassuring manner. Do not remove her from the carrier. Remind yourself her meowing is simply a way of communicating her dislike of the current situation. Remember she is not suffering rather voicing displeasure. The motion of the vehicle may calm her. Be sure the temperature inside the car is adequate for the temperature inside the cat carrier. Should you need to stop along the way, keep your cat in her carrier at all times.
If you plan to travel by plane, check the airline’s policy on pet travel. Most do not allow cats to travel inside the cabin. They generally require cats to travel in a special part of the hold. Not all flights are licensed to carry pets which means your cat could be placed on a different flight.
When arriving at your destination, make sure your cat is secure, comfortable and unable to escape. Give her water and a small amount of food. However, your cat will need time to settle into her new surroundings.
Prior to your travel day, help your cat become comfortable with his carrier. Make it comfortable and inviting. Leave it out with the door open so your cat may wander in and out to explore. Let your cat sleep in the carrier. Doing so will help him become familiar with it. Always use separate carriers if traveling with more than one cat. It is safer and more comfortable.
Withholding food for approximately four to five hours before departure will lessen the possibility of your cat vomiting. However, provide water up to the actual time of departure. It is also recommended you provide water during the time of travel, if possible.
Items to bring when traveling with your cat:
- Appropriate carrier
- Food, water, treats
- Vaccination paperwork
- Blanket or towel
- Favorite toy
- Current photograph
- Cat collar
- I.D. tag with current contact information