Does your cat hold a special and dear place in your heart that you would love to take her along anywhere you go? Do you wish to travel or take a vacation, and wouldn’t imagine leaving your cat behind? You are not alone; a majority of owners show an interest in bringing their cats with them every time they travel or go on vacation.
These furry companions have necessitated increased leniency on pets’ presence in general public areas. There also is increased production of products dedicated to easing your trip with your cat.
Are you interested in bringing along your cat on your journey? Then you will find the tips below invaluable on traveling with your cat.
1. Evaluate Your Cat’s Travel Ability
Do you have beforehand information on how your cat reacts when she is forced into an enclosure or cage for a significantly extended period?
How does this furry friend fare when placed in a carrier? Does your cat become queasy when she’s with you in the car for a long trip?
All these questions inform you that it is crucial always to assess the travel ability of your cat to determine her travel tolerance.
When your car travels with you, she could develop motion sickness. Motion sickness symptoms include excessive drooling, regurgitation or vomiting, defecation and urinating, and being afraid to move (1).
It is, therefore, essential that before setting out on a trip with your cat, you test your cat’s predisposition and reaction to a lengthy journey. You also need to make extra and often costly accommodations if you are going to bring your cat on your trip.
2. Keep Your Cat Cozy and Secure
Your cat should never occupy the front seat of your car. Equally, do not allow her to roam loose in the back seat of your vehicle. Remember, no one tells when an accident could occur. Then why should you be prepared with your seatbelt on, but fail to ensure that your favorite pet is secure?
Considering expert views, you can minimize the effects of road bumps as well as keep your pet comfortable throughout your journey with a carrier designed with a seat belt. (2)
Note: Not all carriers are safe and comfortable. Ensure that you only pay for a carrier with adequate ventilation.
However, if you intend to be on the road for over 8 eight hours, then it is recommended that you use a steel crate and not your cat’s regular plastic carrier. The steel crate should be lined with your pet’s favorite towels. You should add her small toys in it. That way, your cat will be more relaxed throughout the journey. Talking to her in a soft tone will improve her relaxation.
3. Remember to Carry Cat Food and Water.
Unless you assume your cat doesn’t get hungry and thirsty, then you must ensure that your pet is well fed before and during your journey.
Therefore, as you set out for your trip, carry a bag with all the necessities that you will need and enough food to keep you energized throughout your journey.
But have you got some cat food? If you must travel with your cat, you need to be adequately equipped with these:
However, when talking about cat food, it is crucial to ensure that your cat does not become sick easily during your trip. If you withhold food for around 12 hours, you could potentially minimize potty breaks, nausea and motion sickness (3).
Therefore, ensure a hassle-free trip by feeding your cat and allowing it ample time to digest. This will minimize the incidence of puking, pooping, and peeing during your trip and reduce illness chances.
4. Say No to Free-ranging
Are you bringing your cat along on your road trip or journey? If you wish to travel in your car, then you should understand the risk associated with letting your cat roam around freely. How dangerous can it get?
Well, think of a sudden stop, or even a car wreck which poses serious injury risks to the car and the occupants. Worse still, when your cat freely roams around in the car, she could potentially distract you or the driver.
Research shows that distracted driving significantly influences motor vehicle collisions. Pets which roam freely especially in the front have been implicated as a distraction to drivers. Pets present a greater car collision risk when drivers could have cognitive, hearing, or visual impairment (4).
I had had to attend to my friend’s cat when she got wedged behind her car’s brake pedal, and she fatally impeded the braking system. Since then, I have always taken the idea of taking my cat along for my journeys seriously, but more is that I never let my cat roam freely in her back seat. She always is in her sturdy carrier. What I love about it is that she has grown familiar with the carrier, and she is safer in it anytime we travel.
5. Complete the Paperwork
Are you aware of the law which governs animal and pet transport in your state? Are there any health and immunization certificates needed once you cross jurisdictional boundaries?
It is vital that you have your health certificates duly signed by a registered veterinarian whose accreditation comes from a legally recognized body such as the USDA.
The transport regulations are particularly strict when you intend to use air travel. Such rules even get more complicated when your journey is international considering that individual countries have various laws which govern the concept of animal importation.
How do you intend to travel with your cat? Have you thought about the possible legal restrictions that could hinder your travel? Have you made prior consultations to determine how to ease your trip? Hat about your cat’s comfort and safety? Do you have your comfortable carrier around? Have you fed your cat in time, and do you have some cat food and amenities ready?
Take these tips into consideration for an enjoyable, stress-free journey with your cat.