Tips on how to travel with your cat in the car!
Most cat lovers understand how distressing travelling with your cat in the car can be. Here are some tips on how you can reduce and alleviate the fear and anxiety experienced when transporting your cat.
What type of carriers are best?
The best carriers are inexpensive hard sided carriers, which open from the front, top and can also be taken apart in the middle. This gives you and handlers easy access to your cat. Avoid carriers that require a cat to be pulled out from. Choose a carrier that is sturdy, secure and stable for cats, as well as easy for you to clean and carry.
Help your cat become comfortable with the carrier
Make the carrier a familiar place at home by leaving it in a room where your cats spends time. Place familiar soft bedding or clothing with your scent inside the carrier which helps the cat feel secure. A treat or toy may encourage them to enter at home.
Prepare for Stress
If your cat tends to be easily stressed, talk to your vet about possible medical help. You may want to consider using a Feline Feliway Pheromone spray at least 30 minutes prior to transport to help calm your cat. Placing a towel or blanket over the carrier can also provide your cat with a sense of security.
Carriers should be seat-belted into the car to keep your cat safer and to reduce the bumpiness of the ride. Keep your cat inside the carrier at all times and never leave your pet in the car, a cats temperature can rise very quickly in the car especially on a hot day.
Understanding your cats behaviour
Cats are most comfortable with the familiar, and need time to adjust to the unfamiliar. It is important that owners stay calm as cats can sense our anxiety or frustration. Give rewards to encourage positive behaviour.
Before you drive off
Exercise your cat by playing with her before you leave. Also, give her some food and water before the trip (unless your veterinarian directs you to do otherwise).
Pack extra supplies
If your cat needs any special food or medicines, be sure to pack extra to avoid emergencies. It is also a good idea to pack some newspaper or paper towel in case your cat becomes car sick.
Practice makes perfect
Practice driving short distances with your cat to acclimate him to the car.