29 Nov

Traveling with Cats: How to Make the Journey Perfect

Travelling with a cat can be a wonderfully rewarding experience, provided you plan. Given that cats are not reputed for their outgoing nature like their canine cousins are, it takes some planning to ensure that they are comfortable while travelling. Whether your trip is to a local park or city or an intercontinental journey, we have a few tips to ease the planning process, so you get to enjoy a smooth journey with your darling feline.

Remember, different cats behave differently in scenarios like travelling. Some will be tolerant, some will enjoy it, while others will dislike it completely, which is understandable since they’re creatures of habit. Fortunately, with a little acclimation, you will be able to travel with your cat safely and comfortably on both short and long journeys.

Preparing for Your Cat’s Travel

There are a few preparations you need to make before embarking on a journey with your pet. The first will be a vet visit; travelling will be a tough endeavour if your cat isn’t healthy, and a vet visit will confirm your cat is healthy, vaccinated, and has their health records complete & up-to-date. A routine health check-up is important before any out-of-state journey.

The next thing to prepare is your cat's crate/carrier. The nature of the crate will vary depending on your journey; domestic trips can be completed in a soft-sided cat carrier, but international pet travel will require a fibre pet crate, so choose your crate/carrier accordingly. Once you have chosen an appropriate carrier, you’ll need to provide crate training to your pet so they’re comfortable being in it. You can do this by first placing the crate around your cat and letting them interact with it on their own. You can make it feel more like home with a few toys or blankets, and as you do, your cat will gradually become comfortable interacting with it and eventually travelling in it too.

As people, we don’t embark on journeys without a form of identification, and the same should go for our cats.  Make sure your cat has a collar with identification tags for immediate identification, and a pet microchip as a permanent ID proof & safety net. Microchips are often listed as an import/export requirement by various countries worldwide, so make sure your cat is microchipped if your travel is international.

Essentials for Local Journeys with a Cat

There are a few essentials you will need if you’re travelling with your cat, especially if it’s a short to medium-distance journey.

  • Food & Water: Make sure to carry plenty of dry food and clean drinking water. If your cat likes a wet meal, you can use some water to mix in their food. Food and water bowls are also useful, and you should carry a few treats to sweeten the journey. Make sure not to alter your cat’s diet dramatically before travelling to avoid any upset tummies. 

  • Medical Supplies: when you’re on the road, you should hope for the best but prepare for the worst. Make sure to carry a basic first aid kit with bandages, gauze, and antibiotic ointment along with any medication your cat has already been prescribed.

  • Litter: Your cat will need litter on the go. You can use a portable litter box to let them freshen up during rest stops. Make sure to keep your cat on a leash while outdoors; if your cat is the adventurous type, you could head out on a short walk once they have freshened up. 

  • Grooming: The outdoors is beautiful but also equally full of dust, dirt, and irritants, so carry your basic grooming equipment like brushes to keep your cat tidy while travelling. Wet wipes will also help you tidy up any immediate dust and dirt before you can bathe your cat again. 

Safety & Security When Travelling with Your Cat

Regardless of the nature of your journey, the safety of your feline friend is a top priority. When travelling with your cat via road, make sure to keep your cat in their carrier and buckle their carrier with a seatbelt. Appealing as it may be to let your baby roam around the car while you drive, this can lead to some serious issues like distracted driving or an accident. If you are stopping for a break, make sure your cat is leashed before letting them out, and never leave your cat inside a car on a hot day without any ventilation.

Air travel is generally very safe, but the trade-off is the number of booking processes, security checks, and protocols which make it safe. Make sure to choose a pet-friendly airline when flying and read up on their requirements for your cat's travel. Early bookings will always help you since most airlines impose a limit on the number of pets allowed per flight and function on a first come first serve basis.

To conclude, travelling with a cat is a highly rewarding experience which requires a little patience and preparation. Provided you make sure to prepare according to the nature of your journey and your intended destination, you should be good to go. All the preparations and precautions go a long way towards ensuring your journey is a joyful and memorable one.






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