Any cat owner knows that cats are happiest in their home environment. Travelling outside of this comfort zone can be a distressing time (for both cat and owner alike). There are however some steps we can take to try to make the trip to the clinic (or elsewhere) as stress free as possible.
- Always transport your cat in a good quality carrier. Even the most chilled out cats can get spooked by loud noises. A carrier with an opening at the front and the top is ideal. It should be sturdy enough to prevent escape. A cardboard box is no match for a determined cat! Use a towel and/or newspaper to line the carrier. Covering the carrier with a blanket can be helpful.
- Transport cats in seperate carriers. Even best friends can fight if they feel stressed.
- Get your cat used to the carrier. They will be much happier sitting in carrier that looks and smells familiar. Try placing your cats carrier somewhere quiet in the house with a familiar blanket inside. Offer your cat treats and food inside their carrier. Some cats will even choose to sleep inside.
- Try using pheromones. Feliway is a synthetic feline pheromone which can help cats to feel calm. It is available as a spray which can be applied to the inside of the carrier before travel (be sure to do this 15 minutes before putting your cat inside)
- Place your cat’s carrier somewhere stable in the car e.g a footwell, and try to drive as smoothly as possible.
- Cats feel safer higher up – place your cat on the seat beside you in the waiting room, rather than on the floor.
- If you think your cat is stressed when you arrive at the clinic please let us know. We want to make your cats visit as pleasant as possible. We can offer a blanket to cover your cat’s cage, or a quieter place to sit if needed.
- Some cats can suffer from car sickness, just like us. If your cat is frequently sick when travelling please talk to one of us about travel sickness medication.
Hopefully some of these tips will help you to plan the purr-fect visit!