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Traveling with Your Cat


Drs. Foster & Smith Educational Staff
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Traveling with Your Cat

If you plan on taking your cat along on vacation, a weekend get-away, or other travels, here are a few things to remember:

  1. Bring food and water from home. The last thing you want is digestive problems when you are on the road. You may bring your cat's regular dishes, or try a convenient travel bowl.
  2. Call ahead. Many places (including campgrounds) do not allow pets. Make sure it's OK to bring your pet before you leave. There are several books on the market which contain a state-by-state listing of hotels, motels, and inns that welcome pets.
  3. Make sure your cat's nametag is up-to-date and readable.
  4. Schedule an appointment with your veterinarian to update your cat's vaccinations and obtain a health certificate for travel, if needed.
  5. Do not forget your cat's favorite toys.
  6. Pack a first aid kit for your cat. It is always a good idea to have one handy, just in case.
  7. Provide plenty of exercise before you leave.
  8. Stop often on long trips so cats can exercise outside of their crates, and to relieve themselves. To minimize the risk of an escape, always use a good-fitting harness and leash when cats are outdoors.
  9. Travel on an empty stomach. Car sickness is more likely if your cat has a full stomach. If the trip is long, feed a smaller amount than normal at least two hours before you leave.
  10. Restrain your pet during travel in either a soft carrier or plastic crate. It is the safest way to travel for both you and your cat.
  11. NEVER LEAVE YOUR CAT IN A HOT CAR even if you park in the shade. Pets are unable to control body temperature as efficiently as humans and just a few minutes in a hot car could cause irreversible damage or death.

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