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Car sick cat?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
My cat Bernard seems to get car sick. I am taking him in tomorrow for his annual vet checkup and I will ask the vet about this, but I thought you all might have had a similar experience or some advice. Bernard is about 5 1/2 years old and we adopted him when he was 1 1/2. He has one underdeveloped eye that he has had since birth and we (me, my husband and the vet) agree that he has limited to no vision in that eye. I don't know if that has anything to do with it, but it may.

Anyway, we have a cabin in the mountains that is about 2 1/2 hours away by car from our house. Me and my husband go there on the weekends regularly in the summer and when we have a long weekend we like to bring the cats along. We have three cats total and they all seem to enjoy being at the cabin as it has a lot of windows and there are a lot of trees around for them to look at.

We have taken the cats on car rides to my in-laws and Bernard does not seem to have a problem, it seems to have started when we started taking him to the cabin. At first he would meow and get extra drool as we went around some winding roads. On later trips he started to throw up and poo or pee in his crate. We took the cats up for Labor day weekend and on the way up, not yet on the winding road, he peed and pooped in his cage. We stopped and cleaned him and the crate and he was fine for the rest of the trip. We hadn't fed the cats that morning due to his previous problems. On the way back home, he had diarrhea, again this was just about half an hour to 45 minutes from the start of the trip. Again, once we cleaned him up, he went to sleep and was fine for the rest of the trip.

Has anyone else had this problem? He otherwise is a happy and healthy boy.

Thanks for any advice you can offer.
post #2 of 7
Yep! My older cat will vomit in her crate and I found that the only way to keep her from getting car sick is to make sure the a/c is blowing on her. The cool air keeps her from getting sick which makes sense as it does the same for me when I get car sick.

My kitten has had problems on and off with diarrhea but she always has a little within the first 20-30 minutes of a longer trip. I keep a litter box near her just for this purpose. After that she sleeps the rest of the trip like yours does. I have found the primary reason for this is that you're typically turning a lot during the first part of the trip and it makes them nervous. Once you get on a long highway and it's out of their system, things are smooth sailing. I would try the air on your kitty next time and do your best to take turns as gently as possible. It's also hard for them to balance if they're trying to sit/stand up.
post #3 of 7
I had to get anti-nausea pills from the vet for car rides to the vet for kismet! backwards I know, but I give her one before every car ride and she is fine, otherwise she vomits like crazy
post #4 of 7
I've had several cats that would throw up or pee/poop within 5-10 mins of riding. Not a lot you can do about it. Charlie, our show cat, was notorious for this (pee/poop). He would do it mainly coming home, a good thing, but we just started taking a few extra towels and paper towels/plastic bags in the car.

Eventually he stopped doing it. But now he has the opposite - he won't go at all till we get home!

I had a cornish rex that was like your cats. She didn't go out very often. You can try to condition them to car riding - 10-15 mins at a time. If he's fine after doing it, you have the choice of dealing with clean up once or not taking him.

Maybe limiting his food/water before the trip would help.
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
I just wanted to thank everyone for their suggestions. The vet said I could give Bernard 1/2 of a dramamine less drowsy a few hours before the trip and if he does have a motion sickness problem that would help him and stay in his system for about 24 hours.

I think I will try some of the other suggestions of keeping him cool with the A/C in the car and maybe trying out some shorter trips to get him used to it. He never seems to have a problem with the short trip to the vet, its only about 5 minutes away.

Thanks everyone for your help!
post #6 of 7
I'm glad you got an answer...my Padraig gets car sick and poos basically during almost every car ride.

The only exception was when we took him and Gibson to get groomed and he stayed well during the trip to and from the Petco.

That was before we got the other two.

I guess it's fairly common.
post #7 of 7
My cat always throws up after 15 min in the car. Once she does it of course thats all, since she has nothing more to come up. Last time the vet gave her a shot that made her sleepy and all was fine. I find A/C does help...
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