Cats are wonderful companions and are mostly adopted by people who live alone. But this is why it can be difficult to travel without them. You don’t want to leave them alone or under someone’s custody. You could also wish to travel with your feline buddy purely for the sake of joy. There are also times when you are visiting a relative and they request to bring your cat with you.
However, this is no secret to any of us, that cats feel terrified by the thought of leaving their familiar surroundings. They are “place-oriented” creatures, who prefer to stay in a familiar space instead of exploring any new place. This is why traveling with your cat may sound like an impossible dream at first. You are worried that they would hesitate, fall sick or maybe make your trip difficult. But don’t give up yet. Let it be known, you can properly prepare your cat for the trip by taking a few simple steps beforehand.
Below we will be discussing ways of how you can make a road trip a joyful activity for your cat. And what precautions you need to take for your cat’s safety.
Plan before the trip
You should always plan before the trip, and get your cat habitual to the environment of a carrier and a car. If you don’t do this, you most likely will upset your cat. This may result in loud meowing throughout the whole trip, or even your cat falling sick. Here is what you can do to prevent that,
1. Take your cat on a ride
If your cat has never been in a car, you should take your cat on a ride for half an hour or more. You must do this several times before the actual trip. The goal is to make your cat used to the noise, surroundings, and the feeling of the travel cage. You should always keep your cat in a travel carrier while doing this. However, you don’t have to keep the door locked.
Your main purpose should be to make the carrier appealing to your cat. Consider putting treats inside the carrier box to achieve your goal. At the end of the trip, always reward your cat’s behavior. Make your kitty have good feelings about the trip. That’s the only way you can make them happy to go on a long trip with you.
2. Bring your cat items along with you
Cats mark their territory and getting them out of their comfort zone can be stressful. As discussed above, you aim to make your cat’s carrier and environment as friendly and familiar as possible. Notice what items does your cat uses the most and choose every object that is easy to carry on the trip. It could be your cat’s comfortable blanket and engaging toys.
You should not forget to bring them along with you. A common mistake most people make is buying new items to make the trip more special. But it works the other way around for the pet. Bringing your cat’s favorite items will make your cat feel as secure as it’s at home. The science behind it is that cats release happy hormones when they touch or smell their favorite items. You can put these items in the carrier box of your cat, it will keep your cat calm throughout the journey.
Precautions to take on a trip
1. Always be aware of how your cat is feeling
Cats can be carsick. They too suffer from motion sickness like humans. When you take your kitty on rehearsal rides, observe if they show any symptoms of motion sickness. Like frequent urination, vomiting, and lip licking. The last thing you want is your cute friend to fall sick during the trip. This mostly happens with cats that aren’t accustomed to traveling. Know if your cat is one among them.
To prevent this from happening, you can start with short trial rides until they get used to it. You can also add more breaks to your journey. Turning air-conditioning on, turning off any music, and skipping one meal before the trip can also save the day.
You must also keep anti-nausea tablets advised by a vet during the trip.
2. Get your cat out of the car
No matter how comfortable the carrier is, your cat will never get into the habit of staying in it for several hours. And if you force it to do so, this will only upset your cat. It’s better to get it out of the crate once in a while. Take your kitty for a little walk during the trip for fresh air. However, you should always put on a leash for safety purposes.
3. Bring food and litter box
Always bring your cat food on the journey. Change in food or even water can cause your cat to fall sick. Bring enough of your cat food depending on how long you will be on visit.
Also place a litter box just next to the travel crate to make it easy for them to use. Carry gloves in case of emergency clean up.