Tips For Car Travel with a Cat

BNelson By BNelson, 30th May 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Pets>Cats

How to move with a cat? How to take your cat with you when you travel? The best way to transport a pet cat. How to take a cat with you in a car.

Cats Do Not Like Car Trips Generally

While most dogs enjoy car rides, cats seldom do and as such many cat owners face concerns when it comes to having to travel with a cat, particularly if they are moving and have to drive several hours.

If you are moving, or traveling, and will be taking a cat with you this article is written to give you some tips and answer some questions. It is written as a frequently asked questions list in regards to concerns that often arise when people are traveling with a cat.

Should I Sedate My Cat For the Trip?

No, cats should not be sedated for a car trip. If your cat has any kind of reaction to the sedation while you are on the road you might not even be aware of it, and finding a veterinarian in unfamiliar towns can be a challenge.

Feliway can be used to spray the inside of the carrier as this can help calm the cat for travel.

Can the Cat Be Loose in the Car?

Your cat should be in a cat carrier, or crate. If you have more than one cat each should have its own carrier. Two kittens (under three months) can be together in the same carrier. The carrier should have a towel on the bottom in case the cat vomits or urinates, and also for general comfort. You can help make the cat feel “at home” by using a towel that the cat has slept on prior to traveling.

A cat that is loose in the car is a risk to the driver and can be hurt (or go through the window) in an accident. Cats loose in vehicles sometimes get out of the vehicle when it stops and panic in unfamiliar areas. Cats might also go under the brake or gas peddle and can be a real problem. Do not expect somebody to hold the cat either.

How Long Can a Cat Be in a Carrier?

A cat can be in a carrier for eight hours straight, however it is better to reduce the amount of time you spend traveling per day even if it means taking longer to get to your destination. Five hours is about the longest a cat should be in a carrier per day. The biggest concerns are water and stress. Cats should not be given water in the carrier as they could spill it. Cats should never be left in a carrier in an unattended car (such as if you stop for lunch) as the car can quickly become very hot, as such “drive-thru” restaurants are good options, allowing you to park and eat your meal before continuing on.

What Can I do to Stop My Cat From Meowing the Whole Trip?

Not much really, put the radio on (not too loud) and try to ignore the cat. Yelling at the cat will only upset it more. You can try to exercise the cat for a while before the trip, in the hopes that it will sleep more while you travel.

Can I Feed My Cat in the Car?

Do not put food or water in the carrier with your cat. If you are leaving in the morning you should feed the cat at night, but remove the food just before you go to bed (about 10-12 hours before your trip). The cat should not have food in the morning, assuming your trip starts in the morning.

How do I Deal With Cat Litter While Traveling with my Cat?

You should pack a clean litter box and when you arrive at your destination, either a house, or hotel, you can set the cat up in a bathroom with the litter box, food, and water. Do not let the cat out of the carrier in the car to use the litter box. Keep the litter box in a garbage bag to make traveling with it easier, and do not forget the litter scoop.

Can I Take My Cat in a Hotel?

While some hotels allow cats, not all do. Motel 6 is one of the few places that has a pet-friendly policy but you do need to notify them that you have a cat. Its always good to book ahead when you require a hotel that allows pets.

When at a hotel the cat should be kept in the bathroom. Put the litter box, food, and water, in the bathroom before letting the cat in the bathroom. Keep the cat carrier in the room too. Leaving your cat in the smaller room means it will be less stressed and there is less risk of it getting out the door.

Again be sure to remove the food at night before continuing your trip the next day.

How Do I Make My Cat Feel At Home After We Move?

As with in the hotel you should set the cat up in a bathroom or other small room. It needs to have its cat food, water, and the litter box. If you have prepared ahead of time you should have even brought a shirt you wore by did not wash (for familiar smells) or a towel that was used and not washed. You might have the cat’s bed, which should not have been washed before the trip. Adding familiar smelling things will help your cat relax in the new surroundings.

If your cat is a particularly nervous cat, prone to suffer from stress, you may want to note that there are several products available to help reduce stress in cats. A lot of these products are herbal and can be added to your cat’s water.


Cat, Drive, Holiday, How To Transport A Cat, Moving, Moving With A Cat, Taking A Cat In A Car, Travel, Traveling With A Cat

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author avatar BNelson
I write on many topics but am mostly interested in pets and animals.

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