- Oct 8, 2021
We would be stopping off to stay in a motel for the night. Would this be distressing for a year old cat? She's never travelled before. Any advice very much appreciated.
How is she otherwise in the car (like to vet, etc)? Most cats are not fans of travel and the vet might give you something to calm her down for a while, but... two days? Is there no one who can come in to feed her, or take her in, etc?
Is this for a trip, a move, etc.?
I wouldn't take a cat on a weekend trip, but if you're moving of course it can't be avoided. For a longer trip, this would depend on the cat's general toleration of travel. How does she act when you take her in the car for vet visits? Can you find a good catsitter?
Things to know:
The cat needs to be up-to-date on rabies vaccination to cross state lines. They don't stop you at the border to check but if you get pulled over they WILL ask for the cat's papers. So make sure you have her rabies certificate readily available.
If possible, have your cat microchipped ASAP, and of course register the info right away. Most shelters will do same-day microchipping, just give them a call to ask about their current policies. Also have her wear a breakaway collar with an ID tag that has your cell phone number on it. Maybe even a second breakaway collar with your cell phone number written on it in permanent marker, just in case (they're cheap in bulk on Amazon).
Always keep a closed door in between your cat and outdoors---NEVER open the cat's carrier while the car or motel room door is open. Pop the cat into her carrier or the bathroom if you have to open the motel door. Never ever ever open her carrier at a rest stop. You definitely do not want to lose your cat in an unfamiliar place, especially an unfamiliar place near a highway. Just put some puppy pee pads in the bottom of her carrier; it's much better for her to have to soil her carrier than for her to get lost because you took her out to use the litterbox.
Make sure any kids (and adults) who are traveling with you know this too. Use zip ties to fasten the door closed if they're too young or too naughty (including the adults!) to listen.
Thanks for the replies! It is at Christmas time. I'm her "grandma" but she lives with our daughter in Sydney. We haven't seen either of them for a long time due to covid and our daughter really wants to be home for Christmas. Nobody can watch her cat in Sydney due to having their own animals plus we really want Puss here with us (She's a member of the family to us ). I did wonder about medication or sedation for such a long drive.Are you moving to a new home or in a situation where the cat is better off coming with you? To answer your question, it might be distressing, but you could ask your vet if any type of medication might help. You will be stopping at a hotel, so there is a break. If this is a trip that you could make without her, and if you have a good cat sitter who could care for her, it might be best to leave her home. A lot depends on why you are making the trip....not that you have to tell us the specific reason.
How long is the actual travel time each day?Thanks for the replies! It is at Christmas time. I'm her "grandma" but she lives with our daughter in Sydney. We haven't seen either of them for a long time due to covid and our daughter really wants to be home for Christmas. Nobody can watch her cat in Sydney due to having their own animals plus we really want Puss here with us (She's a member of the family to us ). I did wonder about medication or sedation for such a long drive.