August 12, 2013
Cat Travel: 5 tips to make travelling less stressful
If you’re a cat lover like me you will more than likely shudder at the thought of putting your feline friend in the car. Not only do cats not like cars, they are also not fans of unfamiliar sounds.
Over the years I’ve talked to fellow feline carers, pet professionals and various vets to try and glean some of the best advice on offer regarding cat travel. So, the question all cat lovers want to know is: Just how can kitty be comfy in a car?
As I’ve been analyzing some of the tips I’ve been given they all seem to have these 5 tips in common.
Firstly, it is important that kitty becomes familiar with the cat carrier prior to travelling, in order to lessen the stress he or she may experience on the day. Try placing your kitty’s favourite treats in the carrier so that he or she associates it with nice things rather than something unknown and suspicious. Then, start with small drives in the local area and build up the length of time the cat spends in the car. The noise of a car engine is not something cats enjoy, so a little exposure to this at a time should make them more accustomed.
Secondly, be sure not to over feed your puss prior to departure – full tummies and winding roads can result in unpleasantness in your car. It’s a good idea to make regular stops when taking a long trip, bring a small portable litter tray for toilet breaks.
Thirdly, many cats have a penchant for classical music, if you know this makes them relax then why not play their favourite CD in the car? It may help to ease their anxiety on the road.
Also, you should consider investing in some Feliway pheromone spray for cats. This spray helps to alleviate stress in felines. There are other new exciting brands on the market like the Stress Stopper sold via Jackson Galaxy’s (My Cat from Hell) website. These products can be used for a variety of situations like: travelling with cats, taking cats to the vet and introducing foster cats to each other. We have put both products to the test and they have made the whole process a whole lot less stressful!
Finally, make sure your kitty wears a collar and an ID tag (microchipping is best) so if he or she does escape your cat will be found more easily.
The good news is there are some ways to improve your kitty’s journey and make it a less stressful. You never know you might just find that your cat is one of the few that actually enjoys travelling!