Have you ever had to leave your beloved Siamese cat at home while you go on a road trip? It’s tough. Your cat has probably already claimed you as their human, and leaving them behind doesn’t feel right.
I took my Siamese cat, Robyn, on a road trip, and it was one of the most memorable experiences ever. I’ve got some tips to make it possible for you to bring your feline along for the ride!
These tips will help make your road trip a comfortable and stress-free experience. Let’s dive in!
How Do I Prepare My Siamese Cat For a Road Trip?
Here are helpful tips on how to prepare your Siamese cat for a road trip:
1. Consult with your vet
Speaking with your vet before embarking on a road trip is essential.
Motion sickness is one thing you’ll want to discuss with your vet. Some cats get nauseous and dizzy while traveling on the road, as humans do. However, your vet can recommend medication to help ease these symptoms.
You should also discuss feeding when you consult with your vet. Your vet can recommend how often your cat should be fed, depending on the length of your trip. It’s crucial to pack the right type of cat food your cat is used to, especially if they have dietary restrictions.
You wouldn’t want your cat to have an upset stomach during the trip. Thus, consulting your vet about their food intake is essential.
2. Check for any necessary vaccinations
Check with your trusted vet to see if your Siamese cat is due for vaccinations before your road trip.
Common cat vaccines include Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Panleukopenia, and Rabies. They help protect your Siamese cat from harmful diseases and keep them safe on your road trip.
Your vet can also advise you on other preventive measures, such as flea and tick prevention.
3. Practice driving with your cat
Start with short practice drives around your neighborhood. Choose a time of day when your cat is most relaxed and calm, maybe after a meal or a good nap. This helps avoid any unnecessary stress for your Siamese cat.
Pay attention to their body language. Slow down or stop the car if they seem scared, and give them reassuring pets and cuddles.
4. Get a carrier
Your Siamese cat will need a sturdy carrier to keep them secure and ease their anxiety during the trip. Familiarize your cat with the carrier before the trip. You can leave it open in your home with treats and toys inside.
You can try feeding your cat their meals inside the carrier to reinforce that it’s safe and comfortable.
Another trick is gradually increasing the time your cat spends inside the carrier. Start with a couple of minutes and gradually increase the duration daily. This helps them to be comfortable with the space and build their confidence for longer car trips.
5. Use a calming pheromone spray
I swear by using a calming pheromone spray or diffuser. This product releases synthetic pheromones that mimic the ones naturally produced by cats. It works wonders!
These pheromones have a calming effect on cats. They reduce their anxiety and stress levels during travel.
One option you can try is Feliway, a famous brand of calming pheromone products for cats. I like to spray a little bit in my car before we hit the road to help my Siamese cat stay calm throughout the trip.
6. Make a checklist
Use your phone to list all your cat’s essentials on the trip. I find it helpful to start with the basics – food, water, and treats.
Ensure you have enough of your cat’s regular food to last the whole trip, plus a little extra. The same goes for water. You don’t want your kitty getting dehydrated on a long car ride.
Don’t forget about your cat’s litter box and litter! Your cat needs a place to do their business. You must bring enough litter and a litter box that’s easy to clean and doesn’t take up too much space.
You’ll need to scoop out the litter and dispose of it, so bring some plastic bags or a trash bag for convenience.
7. Keep a familiar toy or object nearby
Siamese cats are sensitive to changes in their environment. Having something that reminds them of home makes a difference.
It could be their favorite blanket or a stuffed animal they love to cuddle with. Make sure your Siamese cat really loves whatever you choose.
8. Check the weather
Remember to check the weather forecast before your trip. You can do this through various weather applications on your smartphone.
Avoid bad weather conditions if possible.
9. Keep a consistent routine
Make sure to stick to your cat’s regular feeding schedule as much as possible. Cats thrive on routine, and changing their mealtime can cause unnecessary stress.
Use the same bowls and dishes they use at home to create a sense of familiarity.
10. Familiarize your Siamese cat with the destination
Start by finding pictures or videos of the place you plan to visit. You can find these online, or even better, take some yourself if you’ve been there before.
Show them to your Siamese and talk about the sights and sounds there. Tell them about the fun things you’ll be doing together! This helps ease anxiety and makes them more comfortable when they arrive.
Another way to familiarize your cat with the destination is by
playing with them with toys resembling items in the new
environment. For example, you can play with your cat using a seashell toy if you’re going to a beach destination.
11. Plan for rest stops
I recommend stopping every few hours to let your cat out of their carrier to stretch. And, of course, to use the litter box! Cats are picky about their litter boxes, so bringing a portable one in the car is a great idea.
Remember that not all rest stops are created equal. Some have designated areas for pets. Others have walking trails or grassy areas to take your cat for a short walk.
12. Consider a travel harness or leash
Not all cats love being cooped up in a carrier. A harness or leash is a great alternative if your Siamese is comfortable wearing one.
You can opt for a harness with reflective or bright colors so your cat is visible in low-light situations.
13. Check for pet-friendly accommodations if you’re planning on staying overnight
Many websites and apps help you find the perfect accommodations. Many of these include reviews from other pet owners, so you can better understand what to expect.
Don’t forget to check the pet policy of your chosen hotel. Some places allow pets for a certain fee, while others restrict the number of pets allowed. It’s always best to call the hotel and double-check their policy before making a reservation.
14. Create a comfortable environment in the car
Make sure to adjust the temperature inside the car to a comfortable level for your cat. Remember, cats are sensitive to temperature changes, so it’s crucial to keep it cozy. Your cat may start shivering if it’s too cold; it may become restless if it’s too hot.
Use the car’s air conditioning or heating system to set the ideal temperature.
Another way to help your cat feel more at ease is to minimize loud noises. Loud noises like honking, sirens, or loud music are stressful for our furry friends. I advise you to turn down the radio and keep things quieter.
15. Secure the carrier in the car
You must fasten the carrier properly to ensure your Siamese cat’s safety. You can use a seat belt or harness to secure the carrier to the car’s seat.
You should always take extra precautions for a safe and smooth ride. Even the most well-behaved cats can get scared or anxious during a road trip. They might try to escape or scratch their way out.
16. Consider a microchip or ID tag
Don’t risk traveling without proper identification for your Siamese cat.
A microchip is a tiny device as small as a grain of rice inserted under your cat’s skin. It has a unique identification number that is registered with a database. This can be scanned by a veterinarian or animal shelter if your cat is lost.
You can also go for a collar with an ID tag if you prefer something more traditional. These tags usually have your cat’s name and phone number engraved. Make sure the information on the tag is up-to-date and easy to read.
17. Consider getting a GPS tracker
A GPS tracker is helpful during the trip, especially if your cat is prone to escape. Look for a reliable GPS tracker with good reviews and long battery life.
Make sure to choose a tracker that is compatible with your phone. You want to track your cat’s location with an app.
You also need to consider the GPS tracker’s size and weight. Your cat may feel uncomfortable wearing a bulky and heavy device. Look for a lightweight, compact tracker that won’t hinder your cat’s movements.
18. Feed your cat a light meal before the trip
A light meal for a Siamese cat is low in fat and easy to digest. This includes lean protein (e.g. chicken or fish) or specially-formulated cat food. This helps reduce the risk of motion sickness and prevents your cat from vomiting in the carrier.
Avoid any foods that are high in fat. These are difficult for your cat to digest and may make them feel sick.
Ideally, you should give them their light meal around 3–4 hours before you’re due to leave. This gives them enough time to digest their food before they hit the road.
19. Monitor during the trip
Keep an eye on your Siamese cat during the trip, and check for signs of stress, illness, or dehydration. Offer them food, water, and litter breaks every few hours. Don’t let your cat roam in the car, as they could get hurt during sudden stops or turns.
20. Consider natural remedies
Consider trying essential oils for your Siamese cat. Essential oils are popular for their calming effect. They help alleviate anxiety in cats, just like in humans.
Some of my top picks are lavender, frankincense, cedar wood, and rosemary.
Put a few drops on a cloth and keep it near your cat during the ride. Just a friendly reminder to avoid applying essential oils directly to your cat’s fur or skin. Have a chat with your veterinarian and follow their recommendations.
21. Cover the carrier
Your Siamese cat may want to take a nap on the road. Try covering their carrier with a blanket or towel.
Covering the carrier also helps reduce stimulation from the outside environment. The sounds and sights of passing cars are overwhelming for our cats. Providing them with a little privacy helps them relax.
But not every cat is the same. Some prefer to keep an eye on everything that’s happening around them. Pay attention to your cat’s body language and behavior if you’re unsure whether to cover the carrier.
22. Anticipate Emergencies
Bring along your vet’s contact information and research emergency
animal hospitals along your route, just in case. Have a first aid kit with basic supplies in case of accidents or injuries.
Your first aid kit should include basic supplies such as bandages,
gauze, antiseptic wipes, scissors, and tweezers. Keep a pair of gloves handy to protect yourself from infections. You can also ask your vet what’s essential to include in a cat first aid kit.
23. Avoid leaving your Siamese cat alone in the car
Siamese cats are known for their social personalities. They need companionship and lots of attention to thrive. Being left alone in a car, even briefly, can be stressful and anxiety-inducing for them.
Plus, it is dangerous in extreme weather conditions, like when it’s too hot or cold outside. Taking your furry friend with you is best, even when you’re only stepping out for a quick errand.
24. Give your cat attention
Give your cat attention on a road trip by playing with them like at home. Talk to them soothingly, scratch behind their ears, or pet them. Your furry friend will appreciate the extra attention, and you’ll both have a wonderful road trip.
25. Stay calm and patient
Siamese cats can pick up on their owner’s emotions quite easily. Your cat will sense it if you feel stressed or frustrated during the road trip. They may become more anxious or unhappy in return.
Take a moment to breathe and remind yourself that road trips are
about the journey, not just the destination. Put on some relaxing music, and do whatever you need to maintain a calm and happy demeanor.
Thanks for reading! Check out this other article if you’re looking for even more help on traveling with your Siamese cats. It has plenty more tips about bringing your kitty along next time! Happy travels!