Do you want to bring Fluffy along with you on a trip? Are you moving and want to stop at a hotel along the way? Are you afraid to leave them alone while you’re gone? You can bring your cat with you, but as we all know, cats can be difficult to accommodate, and because of that, special consideration should be given to how to travel with them.
The first thing to figure out before embarking on your trip is whether or not you can find a hotel that will accept your furry friend. Some hotels say they accept pets but don’t allow cats. Others accept cats but require a deposit. It’s a good idea to find out before booking your hotel what their policy is to make sure there aren’t any surprises when you arrive. (Always give the hotel a call to find out what their requirements are about cats.)
Cats are not known for liking to go on car rides, so it’s important to know your cat and how they react to a car ride. While a dog might kick back and relax, many cats will feel stressed and might show it by howling, panting (yes, cats can pant), acting panicky, etc. They might associate being in the car with going to the vet, which is an unpleasant association for many animals (thermometer anyone?).
Here are some tips to make you and your cat’s trip more enjoyable:
1. They need to be kept in a kennel, and it might be a good idea to cover the kennel with a cloth or blanket. It can also help make your cat more comfortable to put a blanket or towel inside of the kennel for them to lie on.
2. Have your cat near enough (in a kennel, of course) so that you can reassure them. They want to know that you’re there and that you’re going to protect them.
3. Try to get your cat used to a kennel and used to riding in a car before a long trip. (Some cats will never get used to it, but this can still help make the trip less traumatic.)
4. Remember that cats are generally more sensitive to noises than dogs, so you should try to make the ride as quiet as possible and should probably avoid blasting your music.
5. Talk to your vet to see if they have any suggestions. They might want to give your cat something to make sure they stay calm.