Cats and Cars

CatChannel expert Jeanne Adlon, professional cat sitter, offers tips for going on a road trip with your cat.

By Jeanne Adlon | Posted: April 9, 2010, 3 a.m. EST

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Q: I’m thinking of taking my cat along on vacation. We are driving. Any thoughts?

Travel can be wonderful for the whole family but it has been my experience that most cats dislike it and are happier at home in their familiar surroundings. Then there’s the problem of trying to convince your cat that the cat carrier is a good thing. Since they are usually only in one on their way to the vet, with memories of being poked and prodded, that is not always easy, as any cat owner knows.

Still, if you intend to travel by car with your cat, it is essential he be in a carrier with the carrier secured. My friend’s niece had a very scary experience while driving with her kitty. She had just adopted her first cat, a cute calico named Toni, and wanted to take her to a friend’s house. Unfortunately, she let Toni run free in the car. Just a kitten, Toni had no intention of behaving and proceeded to zoom around the car and under the seats. Julie reached down for a moment to catch her and rear-ended the car in front of her. Fortunately no one was hurt. Please readers, keep your cat in the carrier and secure it with a seat belt.

Before you begin your trip, make a list of supplies your kitty will need. You may not be able to find the essentials as easily as you think while on the road. These include:

- Food, water and bowls for each
- Favorite toys and treats
- Litter and litter pan
- Medications
- Bedding with your scent to make your cat feel comfortable
- Paper towels and garbage bags for easy cleanup

I would suggest not feeding your cat after midnight the night before to help prevent car sickness. Make sure he wears a collar with an ID tag containing all contact information—just in case. Meanwhile, have a wonderful trip with your cat and happy trails!

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Reader Comments

LK    bnj, MD

4/23/2010 2:59:38 AM

lk

Evan    NY, NY

4/15/2010 10:53:31 PM

Good to know.

Evelyn    Beamsville, ON

4/15/2010 9:55:29 PM

The only time my cats travel in the car is to the vet.

Holly    Stouffville, ON

4/15/2010 6:58:33 PM

Great tips! Thanks for the article!

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