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Moving a cat?

Normally I would not post this to a computer forum, but since this is Nekochan...

There is a chance that I will have to move about 1200 miles when I get a job. I don't have much stuff so I will move it by renting a small uhaul trailer which I can toe with my ford bronco. Between the two I should be able to take just about everything, including the Origin 200 :) .

This leaves me with the question of how to move my house cat. In the past I have stuck her in a cat carrier and put her in the back of the car. She complains for a good chunk of the trip but comes out OK. However, the longest drive I have taken her on has been 6 or 7 hours. The 1200 mile drive will be at least 2 days / 1 night, maybe 2.5 days & 2 nights. On top of this it may take me a day or two to rent a house...

I doubt that the cat would be very happy being in a cat carrier for 2 or 3 days (I bet Nekonoko would not), so I am wondering if there is a better way to move her? I can't think of one, but I thought I would check.
-WolvesOfTheNight
When I moved from Texas to Virginia, I left a space behind the front seat for the litterbox and a bowl of water and food. I let my two cats roam freely in the car. If your cat is pretty mellow, it should settle down after a while and just curl up and relax.

My cats were fine when I was with them. They didn't get underfoot and generally stayed within arms reach for comfort. A little freedom is all they wanted. When I stopped for food, I left them in the car (it was a spring move so it wasn't hot) with food and water. Not exactly PC but they were fine by themselves for 30 minutes. I did make arrangements before leaving to stay in hotels that accepted pets during the stopovers. Trip took 3 days and went very smoothly overall.

Matt
If you have a cat that will just curl up and sleep that might work, but my cat is the type that would stand on your shoulder, claw you, and look out the window while you are driving. Also, there is a good chance she would get in the way of the clutch / brake / gas pedals at a really bad time (leaving me with the choice of stomping on her or running into something).

I considered letting her roam around in the car when stopped for the night [I might camp somewhere] but she could hide in a pile of stuff so that I could not get her back in the carrier when it is time to move again. I guess that reserving a room at a pet accepting hotel would help.
-WolvesOfTheNight
Our cat came from Switzerland originally, and was moved to the Netherlands ~ 5 years ago.

We moved this year and for two months lived with my parents who don't like cats so she went back to Switzerland for that time. Recently we took her back to the Netherlands. So she's an experienced traveller by now :wink:

A few observations:
1) Driving at night means the cat freaks out everytime you overtake a truck due to the lights flashing by.
2) When we moved her to Switzerland she spent a few nights in an asylum before we took her to Switzerland, so she was already somewhat stressed. Then we gave her the pill and before it could properly calm her down we took of. She was very stressed because of that, and by the time we arrived the cat had almost no voice left and we were exhausted as well.

I would definately recommend giving the cat a tranquilizer, but I'm not sure giving them two days in a row is a good idea. especially if it's an old cat.

Btw: Netherlands - Switzerland takes about 8 hours.
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Giving a light sedative to a cat two days in a row is usually OK unless they are very old. You will need to get this from your Vet of course.
The sedative (typically Acepromazine is used) usually lasts for 6-8 hours at a time, but possibly longer. The cat is awake during the time and can eat/drink, but will be fairly dopey.
The side effect of the drug is that it also helps prevent motion sickness (one of the reasons some cats keep crying out while in the car).
The tablet needs to be given approx 30min to 1hr before setting off and the cat should be left in a quiet place, otherwise the drug may not work, or not work as well as it should.

Ideally you'll want to stay in hotels/motels that accept pets so your cat can be out of the box overnight.

I have a Veterinary degree btw, so I am not just copying something I saw on the web. :D
However, since this is not official advice, you should talk to you Vet and follow their advice.

Nik.
nvukovlj wrote: However, since this is not official advice, you should talk to you Vet and follow their advice.


Indeed, your vet should be able to let you know if your cat would have any complications with the medication, etc. Best to ask the experts.
VenomousPinecone wrote:
nvukovlj wrote: However, since this is not official advice, you should talk to you Vet and follow their advice.


Indeed, your vet should be able to let you know if your cat would have any complications with the medication, etc. Best to ask the experts.


Cat might get the munchies though... :D
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WolvesOfTheNight wrote: I am wondering if there is a better way to move her? I can't think of one, but I thought I would check.

Cat, hmmm. Tie a rope around her neck and let her run behind the car ?
Duct tape.

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Sufficiently many mice around will keep her happy for however long your trip takes... :lol:
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hamei wrote:
WolvesOfTheNight wrote: I am wondering if there is a better way to move her? I can't think of one, but I thought I would check.

Cat, hmmm. Tie a rope around her neck and let her run behind the car ?


that's for dogs.

A friend once sent the cat by mail to her ex (or something like it, don't recall the history). but they have especial delivery boxes and prices for live animal. you just sign up something that says you understand that it's wack and that you've made sure that a vet drugged the animal.
I've seen guys who keep cats in their 18 wheelers doing long haul trucking. Some cats are more adaptive than others though... :D You might be able to arrange to turn him/her loose in the truck. Maybe you could even take it to the truck for a few hours during the evening. Then start driving the truck around the block in the evening. Eventually, you might condition the cat to get the idea that the truck is cool. :) Just a thought- might not work. It really depends on the cat in this case.
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Sedate it for God sake.
Your vet will probably be able to help you.
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