Cats are territorial in nature, and they usually follow routines. Taking them out of their familiar environment by bringing them on trips may make them uncomfortable and irritable. Here are some important considerations that will keep your cat safe and comfortable during travel.
1. Get a cat crate or carrier.
Choose the biggest crate that you can fit into your car. If traveling by air, choose a carrier according to airline specifications, so you can bring your cat with you in the plane's passenger cabin. Bring a cloth cover for the crate as well. Put a tag on the carrier with your name, contact number and address. Other owners even attach a tag containing their cat's feeding schedule.
2. Put a collar on your cat.
Put an identification tag on your cat's collar containing your contact information. You may also consider having your cat micro-chipped by your vet.
3. Bring along essential cat supplies.
Food and water should be brought along in addition to their containers . Catnip is a good addition too, especially during long trips, as this has a calming effect on cats. A carrier-sized litter box is a must for long drives. Chew toys and pillows are smart add-ons so your cat senses familiar things and feels as close to his comfort zone as possible.
4. Bring along the required documentation.
This is especially important during airline travel. Have the most current health certificate issued by your vet available during check-in at the airport. Quarantine regulations have to be checked as well. You do not want your cat confiscated or denied entry on the plane because of this oversight.
5. Feed your cat during the trip.
Stick to your cat's feeding routine even during travel. Breaking your cat's feeding schedule may turn him irritable and aggressive. Also, make sure to give your cat water every hour to avoid dehydration.
6. Inform the hotel.
Be sure to mention that you will be bringing your cat with you when you reserve that hotel room. Some hotels will charge a minimal fee for this arrangement.
As with any kind of pet, cats usually feel insecure when they are not in their familiar surroundings. Making certain that they are taken care of and soothed during travel is very important, so that they do not get traumatized from the trip.