In general, felines prefer not to travel. Most cats don’t like to change their environment and the car stresses them out. Especially the moment when they have to get into the carrier or cage. We have already told you the tricks for traveling with dogs, so today we bring you a practical guide with basic recommendations if you have to make a long trip with cats. It is not an easy task, but following these tips, you will have no problem.
1. The cat always in the carrier
Although this detail should be complied with in general, there are still people who take their pets lose in the car. It is forbidden for a cat to roam freely in the passenger compartment, and it can be dangerous, not only because of sudden braking but also because of any unexpected reaction the cat may have, putting us in danger at the wheel. For this reason, a carrier should always be used.
Most veterinarians agree in recommending rigid carriers with grids, as they are safer. As for their placement, it is best to place the cat carrier on top of a seat, fastened with the seat belt, or on the floor between the front and rear seats, so that the box is well secured, but the animal can breathe without difficulty, away from the jets of air conditioning.
2. Make him feel that he is in a familiar place like this website!
The main problems cats often have in a car are usually due to unfamiliarity with the vehicle. Spending many hours in a new place, without being able to perform their daily routine, can cause stress and anxiety in cats.
For this reason, it is advisable to make a couple of short trips beforehand to familiarize them with the environment. In addition, it is necessary to accustom them to use their carrier little by little. One thing that is usually done is to leave it open in the middle of the living room during the previous weeks so that they become familiar with it.
3. Offer peace of mind
There is no worse combination than a long trip, loud music, and a cat on board. As a rule, they are calm animals but are slow to adapt to their environment. Therefore, it is advisable to make it easy for them, avoiding creating an environment in which noise predominates.
Play music at a rather low volume and try to avoid the noises generated by lowered windows. It is possible that the animal will meow at the beginning of the trip and even during a large part of the journey. Therefore, it is advisable to talk to him from time to time in a calm tone to calm him down and never take him out of the carrier.
4. Stop every two hours
Normally, on long trips, you should make stops to rest and stretch your legs. Some drivers skip these rules, something that is not very advisable, especially if we have a cat on board since it is necessary to stop so that it can drink water and use its litter box.
However, it is very important that the cat does not get out of the car, in case something happens to it. It is also not advisable to leave them alone in the car since they can suffer a sudden change of temperature, as they are very sensitive to these changes.
5. Sedatives and pheromones for motion sickness
Changes in the environment, sudden movements, or sudden changes in temperature can cause felines to become dizzy.
One of the ways to avoid this is to place the carrier on the floor since this way they will not be able to see out of the window and their dizziness will be reduced. If we still cannot calm them down, we can also give them a light sedative to calm them down, or you can even spray synthetic cat pheromones inside the vehicle half an hour before the start of the trip. Both pheromones and tranquilizers are available at any veterinarian.
6. Food three hours before departure
Another aspect to take into account is that, as far as possible, the pet’s meal schedule should not be altered. Therefore, try to make the stops coincide with their usual feeding schedule. In addition, feed him three hours before the trip begins to reduce his feeling of discomfort and dizziness.