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Unread 02-03-2007   #11 (permalink)
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If your cat is not used to travel, talk to your vet about a tranquilizer for her. My friend tranquilized her cats on a 20 hour drive. They just curled up in their carriers and slept almost all the way.Before starting the trip, put a harness (not just a collar) on her to wear ALL the time. Keep her in a carrier whenever it is not required that she be out (e.g. litter stops). When you open the carrier, be sure that she can't get away, e.g. close car or motel doors. When the carrier is opened, reach in with the leash and attach it to the harness before kitty can come out. My cat got away at a rest stop and climbed into the engine of an adjacent car. Fortunately, the engine was turned off. When we opened the hood, she was cowering, scared to death.Put a folded towel in the carrier as a bed. You might want to stitch that together with big stitches so it will hold it's shape during the trip. Be prepared with extras because she might pee on it.If she is not used to the harness and carrier, familiarize her with them beforehand. Put her in harness and then the carrier every day. Increase the amount of time she spends in it each day. Take her with you in the carrier in the car while you do errands so she gets used to driving around.When it's time for her to get out from her practice sessions, give her lots of praise, petting, and a serving of her favorite food.If you aren't taking your furniture with you, put towels on the places she frequents for a week before you move, then take the towels when you move. Familiar smells are very important to cats.When you get to the new place, keep her indoors for 8 weeks. (Yes, EIGHT weeks!) Cats are slow to adapt to changes and if you let her outside before then, she may wander off looking for her old home.Be certain to have a collar and tag on her, and if she doesn't have one, getting an ID chip for her would be a good idea. Motel 6 commonly accepts pets. They also have a policy of being the least expensive national chain at each of their locations. You can get a printed directory at one of their motels or by mail from the web site.
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