Traveling with a cat?! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 09:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I've traveled a few times with my cat.  The first trip was when she was a kitten and she didn't have any issues.  Now she freaks out in the car and whines the entire drive.  Upon arriving at my parents, she hides under a bed and only comes out at night to eat/drink/use the bathroom.

 

I have to go out of town for business/mini vacation with my DP.  During this time my apartment complex is going to be replacing carpet in my apartment.  The only option I have is to leave her with my parents (who happen to live in the city I'm flying out of).   Does anyone have any tricks or secrets to making travel easier on cats?


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#2 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 09:50 PM
 
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my vet recommended benadryl (I don't remember the dosage so don't do it without talking to a vet first) to ride on an air plane.  It didn't knock her out but it DID help her calm down.  She acted a tad bit weird for a few hours while it wore off and still hid for quite awhile while she adjusted, but she didn't freak out.  I imagine something similar would work for a car ride too.

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#3 of 12 Old 04-30-2011, 05:17 AM
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Cats HATE change. Period. They do not appreciate being moved a lot. I have a friend who drags her poor cat everywhere and that thing is s neurotic, he wasn't that way until she started doing that..

 

If you have to travel with him, ok this is going to sound kinda nuts. My cats do so much better in the car when they are not in a carrier. I just let them go sit in the way back and they are fine...This is NOT advisable for several reason, 1 being they could get under your feet while driving, very dangerous. 2. They can escape the car more easily if you aren't really really careful. 3. It is hard once you need to get them out of the car sometimes. 

 

I'm just saying it works for us. No it isn't a great idea but we do it and have had no issues yet..

I second the benadryll or Rescue Remedy for kitty. No matter what being in a new place is going to stress the cat out a lot.

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#4 of 12 Old 04-30-2011, 08:06 AM
 
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yes, no carrier too.  I am generally very against having pets loose in a car (going so far as to using the doggy seat belts hehe) but my cat does SO much better if I put her in the front passenger seat loose.  She is still clearly nervous and sheds like crazy because of it, but she doesn't panic and make awful noises.  She DOES try to hide by my feet part of the time so I just push her back to the median or passenger seat.   It isn't my preference to have a cat loose, but I figure a guaranteed panic attack is worse than the risk for a car accident.


 

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#5 of 12 Old 04-30-2011, 10:00 AM
 
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You can pick up a calming supplement at any pet store.  I've used it for my cats, it's made with the same stuff that makes you sleepy after Thanksgiving turkey.


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#6 of 12 Old 04-30-2011, 02:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks.  I'll call the vet about the benadryl dosage.  That's something I already have and wouldn't have to buy.  I don't think I'm comfortable driving with her out of the carrier.  She would want to be under my feet.  It would be okay if she would just sit in my lap or on the seat.   I really really hate that I have to do this.


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#7 of 12 Old 04-30-2011, 02:58 PM
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I get that, you can always try it, you might surprised. I had a cat so freaked out in the car that he peed and pooped ALL over himself in this carrier. i had to take him out and wash all the nasty poop off him. Then we let him just sit in the car. he curled up in the back and that was that. the difference was night and day...Cats are weird creatures.

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#8 of 12 Old 04-30-2011, 04:53 PM
 
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I travel with my cats all the time (a couple times a month on long 8-10h drives) The younger of the 2 has done it since he was a kitten and travels beautifully in his carrier.  My older girl has also travelled since young (15 now) but for the first few years she was a horrible traveller.  I gave her acevet (acepromazine)and sometimes it worked and sometimes it made  it worse (common side effect on an already stressed cat).  I discovered that she travelled really well out of her cage.  So she happily roams free and I have a litter pan placed in the far back for long trips if she needs it.


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#9 of 12 Old 05-01-2011, 04:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well- I called the vet and she said I could give the cat up to 2.5 mL of children's benadryl.  I decided to give less b/c I was unsure how my cat would react.  First, she foamed at the mouth and shortly after she threw up. greensad.gif  The car ride was okay.  She didn't whine very much but I don't think she had any benadryl in her system... I think she just didn't feel very well.


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#10 of 12 Old 05-02-2011, 05:32 AM
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Originally Posted by firefrenzy View Post

Well- I called the vet and she said I could give the cat up to 2.5 mL of children's benadryl.  I decided to give less b/c I was unsure how my cat would react.  First, she foamed at the mouth and shortly after she threw up. greensad.gif  The car ride was okay.  She didn't whine very much but I don't think she had any benadryl in her system... I think she just didn't feel very well.



poor kitty! no fun at all...try Rescue Remedy next time, the animal version, It is about 14 bucks and you can get it at the grocery store in the organic section. It works well for my dog when I just need her to at least have a chance to be a little calmer. 

 

Thats too bad your kitty had such a bad reaction...Ugh puking cats aren't fun.

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#11 of 12 Old 05-17-2011, 09:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Just an update-  this was hands down the best trip taken with my cat.  While I was away at the conference she did stay hidden during the day.  Once I arrived, she was fine being out as long as I was near.  This has never happened!  She did fight me going back into the carrier.  She still whined a bit while in the car but settled down when I opened the carrier a bit and was able to pet her.  


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#12 of 12 Old 05-18-2011, 07:04 PM
 
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I'm glad to hear it all worked out!

 

As a note, a high school friend of mine killed a woman (and her own cat) in a car accident when my friend let her cat out of the carrier. The cat got between her feet. I think I'd perfer a stressed out cat for a few hours.

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