Traveling with cats is a lot different than traveling with fellow human companions. It's because they have very different needs from humans. They may be fine for a few minutes, but you just don't know how their temperament might change after even an hour or two in the car. Suffice it to say that with cats as your companions, your road trip will never be flat.
The animal prefers familiar surroundings and finds it hard to take in too much change. So, if you plan to take your feline friend on a road trip, it is essential to prepare them well. In this post, we will list 6 effective ways to ensure a smooth and enjoyable trip with your cat.
Take Care Of Your Cat's Feeding And Water
One of the things that's sure to spoil your road trip is taking along a hungry kitten. A cat that's hungry is never happy, so you must pack adequate cat food in ziplock bags to feed your pet whenever needed.
It's best to purchase cat food at a discounted price from online stores. You can get quality food from leading brands like ZiwiPEAK, Iams, and Authority Chicken Food. These food items have high-grade animal protein, which will keep your cat satiated for a long time.
Also, ensure that your pet remains hydrated throughout the trip. Bring portable water bowls if you are traveling to a warmer place.
Pack A Large Travel Carrier
The most secure place for a cat in a car is in their carrier. Letting them wander freely inside the vehicle can make you vulnerable to accidents. When buying a carrier, look for one big enough so that a cat has a place to move around. It should also have good ventilation and safety features, such as a metal frame so your cat remains protected.
Before the road trip, get your cat used to the carrier. They will stay in it for a long time during the trip, so it's better to train them to become comfortable in this place even when it's closed.
Bring Your Cat's Favorite Items
As mentioned earlier, cats love to be in familiar surroundings. A road trip can make them uncomfortable as they find it challenging to take in the new environment. To make things easier, pack some of your cat's favorite items and give them those things while traveling.
For example, if your cat loves its blanket, bring it to the trip. To make your cat more comfortable in their carrier, put both their bed and blanket inside. You can also put a scratcher in case your cat might want to use it. Adding in a toy or two can also help.
Scents Or Anxiety-Reducing Medications
It can be slightly difficult to train your cat to get comfortable for a long road trip. Besides packing in a regular item, you can also use familiar scents to give them a homely feeling. Use olives, catnip, honeysuckle, non-citrus fruits, or valerian root as a scent. Additionally, ask your veterinarian for anti-anxiety medication if your cat is extremely fearful or you haven't had time to practice rides with them.
A word of caution here. Do not use essential oils. They aren't safe for cats and can cause essential oil poisoning in cats.
Familiarize Your Cat With Driving
If you have a couple of days left before the road trip, take this time to get your cat used to driving. You will notice that the first couple of times, your pet will meow like crazy. But soon, they will get adjusted.
A few good ways to prepare your cat for a road trip in the car is by taking them out on short drives. Whether it is to the nearby grocery store or just around the block, these activities will calm them down so they can sit for long periods during the trip. You can also play classical music in the car to help them relax.
Carry Disposable Litter Boxes
Yes, letting your pet do their business inside the vehicle isn't appealing. But litter boxes can save you from experiencing accidents. Disposable litter boxes are ideal since they make the clearing up easier.
Ensure that the litter box is accessible to your cat in the car. It will enable them to relieve themselves when the urge to pee becomes overwhelming. Also, check whether the little box is clean; you don't want to travel for hours with a dirty litter box!
Taking a long-distance road trip with your cat is not without its share of challenges. Still, it's absolutely doable. It would be best if you prepare your cat ahead of time by taking them for short trips in the car and helping them settle into their car carrier. Taking the appropriate steps described above will ensure you enjoy an exciting road trip with your feline friend(s).