Cat relaxing in the sunshine before taking a trip in the car

How to travel with a cat in the car

Team Walmart Pets

June 2, 2021


min read

Cats may not long to leap into your car or travel carrier the way some overly enthusiastic canines would, but whether it’s to the vet or on vacation — sometimes cats do need to travel. When it comes time to hit the road with your feline friend, here are some tips you need to know to be ready.

Acclimate your cat to the travel carrier before the trip

Right before the car ride is definitely not the time to introduce your cat to their travel carrier. Take the time to get your cat comfortable with the cat travel carrier WAY before your trip to avoid carrier-related anxiety issues when it comes time to travel. Use lots of treats, cat toys and praise to build a good association with the carrier in your cat’s mind. It also helps to leave the cat carrier out and open in your house so your cat can explore it on their own terms. And of course, you should pick a cat travel carrier with lots of good ventilation.

Make sure your cat has identification 

No, not because they are going to be driving, but just in case something happens. A good tip to keep in mind when you travel with a cat is “expect the best and plan for the worst.” There’s a good chance your trip with your cat is going to go smoothly. However, take absolutely no chances when it comes to the possibility that your cat might get lost on the journey. Be sure your cat is microchipped and wearing an ID tag.

Never leave your cat unattended in a parked car! 

Just don’t. It gets too hot extremely fast, and too much can go wrong. In fact, on sunny days, the sun bakes the inside of your car like a convection oven. That is something you definitely don’t want your cat to experience.

Feed your cat around four hours before the trip

Some cats get an upset stomach in the car. It’s best to avoid this problem by feeding about four hours before the trip. That way, your cat isn’t starving, but also doesn’t have a full belly, and lessens the risk of them getting sick in the car.

Keep the cat carrier secure

When it’s time to travel, place your cat’s carrier on the floor of the car behind one of the front seats. This will prevent the carrier from sliding around and help keep your best friend safe.

Car Safety


Photo by James Yarema on Unsplash