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Old 10-08-2013, 08:46 AM
1 posts, read 3,746 times
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I have a 12yr old cat that we are going to be moving from MN to AZ. He has only been to the vet once and that was when he was a kitten(I know bad). So he is not that used to the car. We did move before from IL to MN but it was only a 6hrs drive and he did howl quite a bit. We are thinking to try and make the drive in one trip with no stops at a hotel so we can keep him in the crate. The crate we have is a large dog crate that we used in the 1st move. My question, what tips do you have to keep him clam for such a long car ride 24hrs+, and I really dont want to let him out of the crate until we arrive at our destation. I know is a long time but think it would be better then try to get him back in the crate after a stop at a hotel, because getting him in the crate is a feat in itself.
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Old 10-09-2013, 01:23 PM
Location: Wisconsin
2,887 posts, read 3,365,062 times
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I think it would be too long to keep him in the crate for 24 or more continuous hours. IMO I'd stop at a pet friendly hotel and let him out for the evening to eat, drink, and use the litter box. (Most cats, if they are stressed, won't eat or use the litter box in the car.)

I would spray some Feliway on a favorite blanket and put that in the crate. He may prefer the crate to be covered or partially covered with a towel (we have one cat like that).
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Old 10-09-2013, 08:04 PM
Location: the wrong side of the tracks Richmond, VA
585 posts, read 1,928,179 times
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I moved from California to Maryland with my then 13 year old cat who HATED the car, she was born in MN actually (and just passed away from kidney failure at 15 last month).

First, PLEASE TAKE YOUR CAT TO THE VET. Seriously. A cat that old needs yearly bloodwork at least. Please please please. But I will not harp on that.

Here's what I did:

I sprayed Feliway in the car for a week or two before our trip, every day. I also kept her carrier in the room so it not only smelled "familiar" like our old place but maybe she'd sleep in it. If the cat has a favorite blanket or pillow or t-shirt of yours, put that in the carrier.

The day we left, she was the last thing I packed. I kept one of those throw-away litter boxes in the back of the car for breaks but honestly, she never ate, drank or used the box on the whole trip until we were settled in each night. This is why you CANNOT go 24 hours with a cat in the car! PACE YOURSELF and settle in each night, it's good for you and the cat, trust me on that! If you are worried about getting him back in the crate, hotels have bathrooms at least, lock him up in there with the crate open so he can stretch and still be easier to put back in the crate in the morning when you hit the road again. If your crate is big enough, then just keep the cat in the crate IN the hotel room but don't go 24 hours at a time, that is too much for all of you.

She was miserable but we both made it through, and most importantly, she was SAFE. Cats don't need to get out and stretch (a stressed cat will dart in a second) so if you must stop and try to offer food or the box, make sure all doors and windows are closed. If your cat is especially skittish, keep him on a harness, even in a secure car (cats can escape into the dashboard, don't underestimate their ability to run away).

If you go to a vet - AS YOU SHOULD, I'm trying not to judge but I really can't believe you have a 12 year old cat that hasn't seen the vet EVER - they could probably prescribe a calming med too that might help.

Hope that helps. But please please - last time I'll beg - take the poor thing to the vet.
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Old 10-10-2013, 12:48 AM
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Spray loads of Feliway in your vehicle, and get a bigger carrier: the best thing I ever did was get a doggie play pen for the long car trip for the cats. There's enough room in it for the cat(s) to walk around and also for a litter box, a container with a little canned food and water, and for a comfy blanket. My cats have been very happy in it - minimal screeching. It fits really well in the back of a van and probably a suv or wagon, and comes in different sizes. Here's the one I bought on Amazon.com - I can't get a photo to print for some reason.
Precision Pet Soft Side Play Yard by Precision Pet

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Old 10-11-2013, 02:39 PM
Location: Cumberland Maine
856 posts, read 1,080,332 times
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When we moved from Washington, D.C. to Austin, Texas, I had a 79 Jeep Cherokee. I removed the back seats, put in a false floor, laid carpet and put food, water, and a litter box for the two cats. I also put a wire barrier behind the front seat to keep them from getting loose when we stopped for gas or food. I wanted them to feel like they were at home and free to roam around. It took about 20 minutes before they crawled into the rear door well and started howling. It went on for about an hour before we started them on some drugs the vet gave us. We had to keep them sedated the entire 28 trip. Next year we are moving from Austin to Portland, Maine (about a 35-hour drive). We have two different cats now, but I'm trying to figure out the best way to get them there. I'm more than 20 years older than I was when we made the last trip so I really don't want to make that drive. Is plane travel safe for cats? I'll pay for an extra ticket to have them on the seat next to me if necessary. Any suggestions?
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