Another "I'm moving to Alaska" thread (Kenai: single, fishing)
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I think the kitty will be ok with the travel. I've taken him short distance and after a bit of looking out the window he usually just curls up on the seat and sleeps. That is if he's not in the carrier. Times he has to be in the carrier, like the vet, he cries the whole time. I can't imagine how miserable a long trip with him whining and crying the whole time would be. I think we're going to keep him in a harness with his leash allowing him some mobility but attached so he can't try and make any mad dashed out of opened car doors. I'm going to give this setup a test run a few time around town to see how he does and to get him use to being in the car.
I did look into some of the professioanl pet movers. I pretty much gave that idea up when I got a quote for $2,000. Maybe its just me but $2000! That seems crazy for basically just a ride to the airport. I would still have to buy the approved crate, get vet papers, and all of that. If I wanted them to borad him on either end of the trip that was going to be an additional fee per night. Maybe I should go into the pet moving business if that is the kind of money to be made!
I was planning to do a bit of camping along the way. With the cat in the tent with us overnight. I know he'll be bear bait but I don't plan to leave him unattended so I really don't think it'll be too much of an issue. I'm not really all that worried about the bears. I've spent plenty of time camping in bear areas and if people use a bit of caution/smarts bears are rarely an issue. I'm thinking we'll do a mix of camping and hotels. To kind of break it up.
If weather is mild, animals have water, windows cracked, etc then I don't really see the problem leaving them in the car for short periods. I'm sure my kitty will be unattended at time when we stop to eat, buy groceries, short sightseeing stops. If people use sense animals can be fine for an hour or two in an car. I woudn't leve them longer...and not in bear country where cars=bear coolers.
I kinda had the bear/wildlife concern as well even without the cat along... I know that keeping the food in the truck isn't brilliant, and bears climb trees.....
I've had them path through my yard (well.. my grandparents' yard) several times a day to check the bird feeders. I've come across bears while backpacking before.. never had problems with them- just shook my cowbell or hit the aerosol noisemaker and watched them scamper off. Even cooking etc out in the woods where we got the heavy-population bear warnings we didn't do anything special to ward them off.
So.. what do we do on the road in that case? Unless I am missing a few pages or I'm blind, the Milepost's section on bears just says to leave 'em be, not what to do if you camp some place that isn't a camping facility.
IMHO, bear encounters will be rare while traveling, unless you're in a feeding area. If this wasn't the case, we'd be reading about more bear attacks. When staying at a campground, look for signs of bears or ask locals (be prepared to have your leg pulled too). If bears are in the area, they'll likely be around garbage cans and dumpsters where the smells are strongest, so camp away from them and the likely paths to them. Your biggest protection is in numbers. The more people at a camping area is likely to produce enough noise to keep most bears away.
As long as you keep your camp area clean and food sealed up, you should have no problems. Don't leave food out for the cat in the car and pick up any dropped pieces. Also, don't use and perfumes or colognes that might smell good to the bears when camping.
LOL!!! All I could think of with that is "Eau de salmon"
"Eau De Bear Spray" after morning shower might be appropriate!!! Seriously...I know of one cat/bear encounter with friends who had their cat in a large screened in tent out in the front yard, wooded area. (In Ma) There are black bears around who really basically are more afraid of us. Anyway...large bear, nose went up in the air and he went to the tent to investigate...course kitty growled...friend without thinking freak'd and ran towards the bear who ran away. Don't know if Canadian or Alaskan bears will do the same!!
we are planning on setting up a bed inside the trailer we will be pulling....sleeping inside the enclosed trailer with kitty. Travel during day with her in the vehicle.
best of luck!!
Dang it guess I'm going to have to return that "Eau de salmon" perfume I just bought. And here I thought it would be the perfect Alaska accessory. :P
I'm not really worried about camping with the cat in bear country. I'm actually more concerned about how we're going to plan the trip so the cat is never left unattended outside or in the car and yet we can still have some time to go on a few short hikes/sight see some/etc. I've had plenty of experience camping in bear country and even had a few encounters with bears in campgrounds. They were black bears though and they're mostly afraid of people and easily scared off.
I've only been scared by a bear once even though I've been around them lots of times. I'm cautious when I see them out in the woods but not scared of them. Here's my close encounter story:
I was sitting at my campground when I heard people shouting about a bear and some people walking around warning everyone that there was a bear in the campground. This particular area (White Mts, NH) has lots of bears and many of then dumpster dive at the campgrounds. So I wasn't really surprised. I decided it was time to put away the food from dinner but that's all I did. A little bit later I heard people shouting again and banging on pots and pans. It seems that several of the campers took it upon themselves to chase the bear away. They chased it around the campground for a little while...making a holy racket. It settled down and I figured the bear had left. But within a min the bear came charging into my camping spot and stopped at a tree about 10 ft from where I was sitting. It reared up on its hind legs and stretched up like it was going to start climbing the tree. Then it saw me and my sister and turned toward us. The poor thing was clearly terrified and that was what made me nervous. A scared/angry bear is unpredictable. My sister and I both froze and I quietly told her not to move and to look down away from the bear. We wanted it not to feel threatened by us. If it had moved toward us I would have started screaming at it/waving my arms, etc to scare it (since it was a black bear it likely would have bolted). But I thought as long as it didn't charge we were better off trying to keep him calm. It worked because after a few seconds (which felt like hours) it turned back to the tree, half sat down, and braced itself against the tree. It was panting heavily and seemed exhausted. Once it turned its attention away from us, we slowly backed away, and gave it some room. It stayed sitting there for maybe 10 mins until it caught its breath and then got up and ambled away.
I doubt when you come up it is going to be that hot on the drive, so perfectly okay to leave the cat in the car for a while, especially if eating or sightseeing parked in a parking lot. If the temp is okay, not too warm (hasn't been a problem) or not too cold, our dogs go with and stay in the car for an hour or so. People up here haul their animals all over, and sometimes when it is too flippin cold IMO. We came up in August and didn't have a problem with it too hot to leave in the truck while going into a store, or stopping for one reason or another.
I would worry more with traveling with the cat with the "Eau de Salmon"
Eau de Salmon is supposed to be used to catch a guy for a romantic encounter while fishing on the Kenai. Not for attracting bears. Besides, I've heard that bears are terrible lovers. This rumor could be attributed to jealousy on my part because even small black bears are larger (and probably better endowed) than I. But, I can raise a single eyebrow (left OR right), and attract women in droves if I wanted frenzied females. No bear I know can do that. They haven't mastered that little trick. And in that (if nothing else), I am the master. You can call me Sensei - I might deign to acknowledge your paltry existence.
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