It was once said, “We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm, and adventure. There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open”. We all know how great and exciting traveling is, but it might become a problem if you have a cat. Of course, the easiest solution is to find the person who will look after it, but If you don’t have such a person or cannot leave your cat, this article is for you. I combine the best tips on traveling with a cat in the car, plane, or RV. So, get yourself comfortable, and let’s get started.
How to Travel with a Cat on a Plane?
First thing first, think of the carrier. The idea is to get your cat as comfortable as possible. Please think of the carrier as the portable base camp and the panic room. The place he will go when feels a little insecure. Therefore, he will not associate that carrier with bad things like going to the vet while going on the trip. Put his blankets or items that smell like you, maybe his favorite treats. To prepare a cat, you can put the carrier near your bed if he tends to sleep in your bed near you. It gives them a sense of belonging with you in your main space. If he doesn’t like the carrier, modify its look by taking the door off and taking the top off. Just make it into a bed, and put his favorite blanket. If he doesn’t have one yet, make one for him, but put it into the spot where he usually sleeps. Uses an old T-shirt, which has your smell and can complement it with his. Finally, give him his favorite treats only when he is in the carrier.
NOTE! Make sure that the career is airline-approved. That’s important, as you could get him all psyched about his carrier, and then it’s like not going under your seat. It might become a big problem, as it’s not recommended, as traveling in cargo might become too stressful for your pet.
- If you are moving, establish a base camp on your way out and your way in. You can put all the good stuff that your cat associates with home or anything that doesn’t have to be thrown into a moving truck like cat beds, cat blankets, toys, food litter box, so keep it and move very last minute. Use things that are scent soakers. Things where his sent is strong in them.
- Make sure that he has all the vaccinations. Check whether the vaccination records are handy, make sure that you’ve got the health certificate as most airlines will not let you fly without that health certificate.
- Prepare for everything that might go wrong when you’re standing at that ticket counter.
- Another thing, when you are going through TSA, they are going to make you take your cat out of the carrier. You can request a private room for that to happen. They have to take you to that room. But if you’re rushed or don’t have enough time, start the harness training with your cat now. Just get him comfortable in a harness because that way, if for some reason you have to take him out in the airport or along the way, he’s not going to get away from you. If you have the time to prep ahead of time and get him trained into a harness, that’s a great thing to do. I wish I knew this trick the first time I traveled with my cat because you’re stressed, and he is stressed, so knowing that you’re not going to lose them in JFK is helpful.
- Have an emergency kit for your cat and includes sedatives. Ask about this kit from your vet.
If the cat doesn’t tend to flip out when he’s in its carrier or the car for a short trip, it’s better not to use sedatives. It’s not going to be the best day of his life, but unless it’s that cat that freaks out a lot, then it’s not to be the worst either. Don’t forget that he will always be with you. Start with something like flower essence remedies that are completely non-toxic, non-harmful, and that aren’t as strong as prescriptions. With the guidance of your vet, try a few different types of medications and see how your cat does as they all are different and can respond differently to other medicines.
- Don’t forget to take such things as:
- favorite treats;
- wet wipes that are pet approved;
- extra towels, just in case he pees or poops or throws up in his carrier;
- garbage bags;
- puppy pee pads are also really nice to have.
- Ensure that you have something to cover the carrier during the flight, as some cats respond differently. Some want to see what’s going on and would rather be in his cave.
- Try to adhere to your everyday routines. So, it could keep the mealtimes somewhat sacred.
How to Travel with a Cat in the Car?
- Evaluate the time you’ll spend in a car if it’s more than one day, so I definitely recommend getting a sport pet large open kennel, where a cat will be comfortable, so you could place there a litter box, if necessary. It’s extremely convenient as you can put food and water bowls there when needed. Also, he can move around and be comfortable. Especially, it is convenient to travel with more than one cat.
- Find a comfortable harness, as a cat needs to wear it the entire time in the car. It’s helpful, especially when you open the doors to get the cat out to get to the pet-friendly hotel or to take him for a little walk or to use the litter box, so it’s much easier to get them out and attach the leash when he already has the harness on. Make sure that the cat is comfortable moving in the harness. Also, it’s much better than trying to lead him with just a collar and leash, as it puts a lot of pressure on the neck.
NOTE! Make sure you acclimate the cat with a harness before moving, and it’ll help him not be as stressed.
- A travel litter box is a great option as it’s portable and has a zip-top. It’s a perfect option as it’s pretty versatile that works perfectly inside and outside the car and in any pet-friendly hotel.
- Don’t forget about the small carrier for getting the cat from the car into the hotel, apartments, etc.
- Apart from that, I strongly recommend using pee pads that are perfect for lining the bottom of the kennel and carrier. Also, take paper towels, hands sanitizer, water, food, bring litter (more than you think you need, just in case). Also, don’t forget about his favorite blanket or rag to make him feel cozier and safer.
How to Travel with a Cat in an RV
- As traveling in RV might be long, I recommend taking an experimental trial run before hitting the road full-time. Do a couple of test drives with your cat, especially if he’s never been on the road, as it will help him acclimate. And if he does terrible, it doesn’t mean you cannot do it.
- As I case of car travel, get a good and roomy carrier, you can even use the one for dogs. Again, make it a familiar environment by putting blankets that smell familiar or cat toys. You can also let your cat room around the vehicle. It depends on your cat’s personality and your preferences. However, it’s better to be prepared for worth, and in case of a car accident, the cat should be in a carrier near you.
- Take breaks for essentials, when he can get some water, stretch his legs and use his litter box. While choosing the place for the litter box, I recommend putting it in the bathroom so that you won’t smell anything in the living room. However, evaluate the space in your vehicle and choose one that is the most convenient for you and the cat.
- Don’t keep your cat in a trailer, as when you drive. Many things can break, and it might be dangerous for the cat, especially during the sudden breaks and accelerations in the vehicle.
- If your cat is getting sick, the best advice is to custom them for being in a car. I think that there are some similarities between pets and humans. We are all prone to getting car sickness. So, take something out of the equation of emptying his stomach. The best advice might be scheduling the mealtime a few hours before the trip or just making sure he doesn’t have a full belly before taking off. You can also give him some sedative or animal histamine. You can talk about it with your vet.
- Talk with the vet before hitting the road for many reasons. Think about getting your cat microchipped and ensuring that all the vaccinations are up to date. Take all the documents with you.
- Control temperature. The best way to control temperature is to get a portable climate controller for RV, which will notify you when the temperature goes up or below a certain temperature.
FAQ about Traveling with Cat
📍What to Do with a Cat When You are Travelling?
It depends on the cat’s behavior and way of traveling. If you are using a car, so from time to time, let your cat have a walk outside so that he can explore new things. Also, you can show him the window view. It won’t be easy to do in a plane, as other passengers might complain that the can is not in the career. If your pet hisses at you, it’s better to leave him alone and cover the carrier with some clothing.
📍What is the Best Way to Travel Long Distance with a Cat?
Traveling by RV is definitely the best, but you should consider the cat’s behavior and which way of traveling is less stressful for him.
📍How Much Does it Cost to Travel with a Cat?
It depends on the way of traveling. Apart from buying all traveling equipment, you’ll need to pay around $125 each way for a carry-on pet if you travel on a plane. If you travel by car, you’ll probably spend more to buy a big cannel for a cat.