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Old 02-09-2019, 11:05 PM
 
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
75 posts, read 53,963 times
Reputation: 125

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Hi, everyone. We'll be moving this summer, and have 3 cats. We're going to drive with them. Should be about a 12 hour drive, so just one long day.

We've searched like crazy for carriers large enough for a disposable litter box, and for each cat to be able to turn around, lay down, etc. I think I've read so much I don't know what to believe anymore.

Cat carriers run small from what I can see. Seems people think cats will just sit or lay in one spot and don't need any space. I've even looked at a bunch of dog crates, and those seem to be a much better size for what we want. Then I get buried in reviews that dogs ate through the fabric or screens. Our cats don't chew things at all, but it makes me leery.

Does anyone have a specific carrier they used for a move that you can recommend? We're looking for sturdy and roomy enough for each cat to be able to move around a bit, and still fit in a small disposable litter box.

I may be overthinking it, and in 12 hours they probably won't even use the litter box. But in all the planning for this move, this is the most stressful thing - making sure they're the least stressed as possible.

Thanks for any brands, sizes, etc. you can recommend!
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Old 02-10-2019, 06:34 AM
 
Location: Florida
47 posts, read 6,064 times
Reputation: 108
We moved 4 years ago from Atlanta to Miami. It was a 12 hours drive - and he meowed for 12 hours straight (but that’s a different story ;-)).

I got a used hard box (from Craigslist), large, for a midiun size dog. Our cat was at that time 14 lbs and the box allowed me to put a small litter box inside and a pillow. I thought it was perfect and comfy. He can walk around and pee.

On the day of the move, we put Gambo in. He sat all 12 hours in the litter and didn’t move once! litter was eventually everywhere because he turned around a few times. It looked terrible. Next time I would move him in a smaller box and put it in the darkest area of the car. Maybe it would then feel more like a safe cage. I think Gambo felt totally lost in the big carrier. If you put in a litter box, I would put it in the front. We had it in back and that’s where he sat.

Good luck with your move. It will be stressful but they will be fine.

Last edited by Jackiemohro; 02-10-2019 at 07:02 AM..
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Old 02-10-2019, 10:12 AM
 
12,354 posts, read 17,046,169 times
Reputation: 17874
We moved with dog crates. Two barely fit in the back of my Jeep. Cake pans for litter boxes, chair pads with rubber backing for seating, water and food in crate mounted bowls.

They could see what was going on and I opened closed windows for sniff-TV
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Old 02-10-2019, 10:40 AM
 
Location: Nantahala National Forest, NC
21,921 posts, read 4,610,841 times
Reputation: 26781
Quote:
Originally Posted by MtDreamer16 View Post
Hi, everyone. We'll be moving this summer, and have 3 cats. We're going to drive with them. Should be about a 12 hour drive, so just one long day.

We've searched like crazy for carriers large enough for a disposable litter box, and for each cat to be able to turn around, lay down, etc. I think I've read so much I don't know what to believe anymore.

Cat carriers run small from what I can see. Seems people think cats will just sit or lay in one spot and don't need any space. I've even looked at a bunch of dog crates, and those seem to be a much better size for what we want. Then I get buried in reviews that dogs ate through the fabric or screens. Our cats don't chew things at all, but it makes me leery.

Does anyone have a specific carrier they used for a move that you can recommend? We're looking for sturdy and roomy enough for each cat to be able to move around a bit, and still fit in a small disposable litter box.

I may be overthinking it, and in 12 hours they probably won't even use the litter box. But in all the planning for this move, this is the most stressful thing - making sure they're the least stressed as possible.

Thanks for any brands, sizes, etc. you can recommend!

Here's what I did to move 3 cats....

Bought a "cat tent", that's made to place outside for kitty to get fresh air (mesh and canvas with windows) but not run off. There is a zippered bottom and zippered top of mesh. If you have an SUV....put the seat down in the back and the tent fits perfectly. It's about 4ft across and is round. Enough room for 3 cats, water bowl, small litter box. All sides are mesh so they don't feel enclosed. Bought online.

Not as safe as a carrier though.

My cats did great, never one meow the entire 6 hr trip.
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Old 02-10-2019, 02:54 PM
 
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
75 posts, read 53,963 times
Reputation: 125
Thanks for the ideas so far!

GBH, that tent/playpen is looking like a possibility. Found some on Amazon, but if you have a specific one you used please let me know.

We will have to have two. One cat is not particularly fond of the other two, so he needs to ride by himself. From what I saw online, though, the other two can ride together and there's still enough room. We may be driving two cars on the same day (not sure yet), so we could do the smaller one with one cat in one car, and the larger one with two cats in the other car. Both are SUV-like (Subaru's) so we should have plenty of space.

And they're not really expensive. That's really helpful because we have to get more than one of whatever we get. They just have to make it one long day so we get to the new place safely. After that I'm not sure I care that much.
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Old 02-10-2019, 03:49 PM
 
Location: North Texas
393 posts, read 186,897 times
Reputation: 881
We moved 11 hours with three cats last March. I was more concerned with the cats being ok than anything else.
I drove my car while my husband drove a van with the cats (poor guy - the husband, not the cats ) Each cat had its own carrier (collapsible soft side). I used a plastic tote as the litter box. When we made stops for gas, etc. I let each cat have access to the litter box separately. None of the cats used it.

This option worked for us. It's stressful, but they forgot all about it once they had new territory to explore.

Good luck with your move.
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Old 02-12-2019, 02:45 PM
 
Location: Midwest
4,012 posts, read 6,930,998 times
Reputation: 6600
What's missing is the vehicle you're using. Minivan IMO is ideal for this. But it's just one day, 12 hours. Easy.

We've moved long distance five times with cats, and one dog. AR-NH-PA-AR-ID-OH. Only one was a short jog.

Take into account that when I was a kid, I let the parakeet out of its cage so it could fly around as birds should be able to do. Yes, they do poop.

All our cats hate being caged. I first discovered a cure when taking an earlier cat, Carrie Chapman Catt, to the vet. Instead of me driving and putting Catt in a carrier, I held her in my lap while my father drove. Much better. She was happy, she purred, I could pet and comfort her, trip was A-OK.
Put her in cage to take her inside the vet's office.

"But what if you crash?" You got a problem no matter what, if you crash.

To make a long story short and keep it from becoming a war story, we always traveled with dog and cats loose in the car. We used an Impala, PT Cruiser, and Soul. The PT has the largest inside space, by far. Both back seats are removed. Yooj, for a small car.

The Lab traveled with my wife in her PT. The cats in my Impala, and later Soul.

Driving alone a couple of thousand miles in the Impala, two cats, litter box on RR floor, water, crunchies. Shelly would nap, lulled by the rhythm of the road. Bizzie would sit on the back package shelf or snuggle next to me (bench seat, very handy for travel). She loved to travel, she loved the sights.

Our last trip, was about 2000 miles over four days I believe. We had luggage for two, plus a covered litter box plus water plus cat grass plus crunchies plus two of us up front. One surviving cat, Bizzie the traveler, was loose in the Soul. The back seats were folded down, so there's a decent space back there.

She'd either nap or perch on the rear luggage shelf cover thingie, just right for cat sightseeing. Or occasionally she'd snuggle in my wife's lap. EVERY time I or we have traveled any distance, even to the local vet, with a caged cat, they hated it.

So my vote is let them be free. Of course, you have to police them up and cage/leash/block them when someone gets out for a rest stop or to fill up. But that's minimal to me, vs. very stressed unhappy cats for the entire trip. It all depends on what you're willing to cope with.

Happy trails.
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Old 02-14-2019, 03:06 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
2,175 posts, read 1,896,942 times
Reputation: 2638
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dwatted Wabbit View Post

"But what if you crash?" You got a problem no matter what, if you crash.

<snip>

So my vote is let them be free. Of course, you have to police them up and cage/leash/block them when someone gets out for a rest stop or to fill up. But that's minimal to me, vs. very stressed unhappy cats for the entire trip. It all depends on what you're willing to cope with.

Happy trails.
I respectfully disagree and think you should keep the cats in carrier(s) at all time.

This is coming from someone who once had a car accident when I had a cat (in a carrier) in the car. I was wearing my seatbelt and the large carrier was in the front seat. Upon impact, I remember looking over and seeing the carrier become airborne.

Long story short--my cat was fine and suffered no injuries (and I was fine too). I shudder to think about what could have happened if he had been loose!
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Old 02-14-2019, 04:11 PM
 
916 posts, read 693,912 times
Reputation: 3591
I moved my cat across the U.S. (2,200 miles) twice. I used my Rottweiler's training crate.

It was in the bed of my truck (the truck had a cap), with a heavy blanket over it and hanging down the sides.

I cut holes in a big plastic container to tie the litter box to the crate.

I gave the cat food and water when we stopped at night but took them up during the day because, even tied down, they would spill.

She was none the worse for the wear on either trip and lived to 14 years

FWIW, I also moved my three horses and three dogs ---- nobody got left behind, going either direction
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Old Today, 12:16 AM
JRR
 
Location: Middle Tennessee
3,453 posts, read 2,066,446 times
Reputation: 4907
We moved from Florida to Tennessee a couple years ago; the drive took us about 14 hours. Two vehicles with a cat in each one. We just put them in their regular carriers and I put a bed sheet over each one. Not a peep out of either one for just about the whole trip. About a half hour from the end, we hit a patch of rough road and the one with me decided that she had enough and meowed off and on for the rest of the time. My wife volunteered to take our usually vocal ginger guy and he was as good as gold the whole time.
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