Some cats handle travelling well, but it is a great stress for others and they can recover from the experience even a couple of days. After all, they are territorial animals with a strong attachment to places. Mine is somewhere in the middle. It properly swears all the time on road, expresses its disagreement aloud and doesn’t miss any opportunity when I am close enough to the crate to let me know its feelings using a claw. Then, it behaves as a proper calm cat and pays me a dismissive look and ignores me right after we get home until it gets hungry.
The fundamental thing is to introduce the crate for travelling to the cat. Leave it open at home, put favourite cat treats inside so the cats has a positive relationship with it and considers it to be its safe spot. You can also put its blanket or a pillow inside. And you can support your cat using natural treatments for overcoming fear and stress you can buy in a pet store or at your vet.
If you go by car, I would definitely prefer a firm crate to a cloth bag. You can also put on your cats’ harness if it withstands it so you would be able to catch it and carry it in a different way in the case of need.
According to Czech legislation, you have the obligation to secure the safety of the transported animal as well as people. Not leaving a cat freely in the car is a sure thing. It is not only life threatening in the case of an accident, anything can also happen to the animal itself. It can easily cause a car accident. The safest way for transporting a cat is to fasten a firm crate using a seatbelt on the back seat. Put the crate on the seat with the door on the side, not facing forward. If you’re interested in the quality test of crates, you can find it here. It’s not recommended to transport cats in trunks, especially in sedans. The air flow might not be sufficient and there’s a risk of cat overheating.
Besides choosing the right crate, you also need to ensure a suitable temperature for the cat. Use air-conditioning in summer and heating in winter. For example, I made a fleece cover for the cage so my cat won’t catch a chill on our way to the car. I think you can also buy one. That it’s absolutely inappropriate to leave cats alone in the car does not have to be mentioned, I guess.
If you have more cats, transport them separately, each one in its own crate. Even the best friends are weird and aggressive in stressful situations. Moreover, it reduces the air flow and the risk of overheating increases. However, you can calm them down by placing the doors facing each other.
If you travel with a cat to a new place it doesn’t know, let it have a look at first in the crate there.. Then release it to the room and leave the door to the crate open so it can hide inside anytime and don’t let it go outside for at least a week so it can attach to the place first.
How do your cats handle travel?