Meow on the Move: What to Know About Traveling with a Cat
Ask a cat owner what his or her least favorite activity with kitty is and you can guarantee traveling with a cat is at the top of the list. But, there are times when bringing your purr-pal along for the journey is needed.
For the safety and comfort of your feline friend, there are some details to attend to before you hit the open road.
Health Considerations Before Traveling with a Cat
The first place to start when planning your trip with kitty is his or her health needs. Because some cats are too elderly, anxious, or are overcoming a recent surgery or illness, it is important to schedule a thorough examination with the pet experts at Springbrook Animal Care Center, who can help you determine your pet’s readiness travel.
If your cat is in overall good health, another major factor is your destination. For those going abroad or to Canada this summer, a certificate of health issued by a USDA approved veterinarian will be required (contact us for more information).
Concerning international travel, we recommend that you start planning at least two months in advance and research the pet import/export requirements to your destination.
Along with the health certificate, you will also want to ascertain the vaccine and parasite prevention needs specific to the region in question, as certain places or travel plans may expose your pet to new illnesses or parasites.
Checklist of Cat Supplies
Once your cat companion has a clean bill of health, you’ll want to make a checklist of the items you will need while on your journey. These typically include:
- ID tags, collar, and cat harness
- Crate and/or carrier
- Food and treats
- Water and food bowls
- Blanket, favorite toy, or other comfort item
- Medical records
- Litter and litter box
- Waste bags
- Grooming supplies
Before the Big Trip
Other considerations will also depend upon your travel plans. These cover everything from lodging with a pet in tow as well as where you pet will be if you plan activities that are not appropriate for fur friends.
Some of the more important details to sort through include:
- Lodging – is it pet friendly and what is the specific policy?
- Boarding – do you have a kennel or pet sitter lined up for any plans that are not safe or accommodating for your pet?
- Rest stops – you will need to allocate more frequent break to give your cat his meals, water, or simply to check in and reassure.
- Safety – is your carrier or crate secured with a seat belt or, if flying, can you bring your cat in the cabin with you?
Preparing for travel with a kitty companion requires a lot more focus on stress and anxiety reduction than it might with a dog. Our cat friends often experience more stress when taken outside the home.
We recommend taking your cat on a day trip or two to gauge stress levels. It may be safer and more comfortable to board if there is high levels of fear or anxiety.
To better plan your cat friendly travels, as well as schedule a pre-travel exam, contact us.