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Getting ready for a 3000 mile journey!

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
I attempted to do a search on this, but nothing came up but an error message three times, so I guess I am posting instead.

My hubby and I are moving. We haven't decided where just yet, but it will either be near my family in Ohio or his in California. We have been looking for houses and jobs in both areas and have narrowed it down to two distinct areas.

If we choose the Ohio location, it's only a six hour drive and won't be an issue. However, if we choose the California location, it's a 3000 mile drive. It won't take much effort to move with the three dogs and bird. Lord knows, we've moved across the country too many times to not have that down by now. But, we never had cats until moving here.

We have three cats, basically. George our white, Cat our orange and Sig, our black and white stray. He's been coming inside lately and now we truly feel responsible for him. So, unless we find him a new home by then where he'd get to be the only cat, he's coming with.

I really need some tips on traveling with them. They'd be traveling together in a jeep wrangler. George and Cat get along great, but Sig is too nervous around the other two to be with them long term. They do okay in the house where they can get away from each other. I will be managing three dogs and the bird somehow in my car. It's going to be a really tight fit as it is. I'm not sure who will be driving the jeep. My hubby will probably be driving the moving truck, so maybe his dad will fly to help. Or perhaps a friend will help. I don't know.

Anyway, we definately need some advice because this is not going to be easy. From a moving standpoint, Ohio sounds a lot better, lol. But California has more to offer us right now. So, we're leaning towards Cali.
post #2 of 7
You really should have a separate carrier for each cat (unless they are littermates and grew up riding together). Stack the carriers on top of each other and seat belt them.

Cover with a towel/blanket and be sure you take a few extra towels, plastic bag and paper towels for any clean ups needed. Do not put food/water in the carriers.

If you stop more then 1/2 hour to eat lunch/supper, then allow them to get out of the carriers and stretch their legs while in the car. I'm assuming you will be stopping overnight at least once, so you don't have to worry about food/water till you get to the hotel.
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
What about going to the bathroom?? That would be my main concern. Jake and I have done the trip in four days before and would like to again if possible. We'll be stopping overnight twice in that case.
post #4 of 7
Most cats don't need to go when car riding and if you are stopping overnite, then you put the cats and the litter pan in the bathroom first before you bring in the rest.
post #5 of 7
We moved from Wisconsin to Southern California and back again with 2 cats. More recently we moved to Iowa and back from Wisconsin. The things I learned:
  1. seperate carriers - even if they are littermates who love each other
  2. bathroom breaks at rest stops - we let them out of their carriers on leashes in the car to use the litterbox. At that time they were used to going outside on leashes, but often it was too noisy at rest stops and scared them.
  3. Make sure to pack stinky wet food- my cats were off their food from the stress and wouldn't eat any dry. Which at that time was their sole diet, so I got FF at a truck stop because I was worried about the not eating.
  4. We did not use tranquilizers. We went through some pretty hot areas and I was worried about them overheating. I had read that tranquilizers can affect the cat's ability to regulate body temperature.
  5. Pack towels in case of accidents.
  6. Line the carriers with puppy training pads, it makes cleaning up an accident easier.
  7. The last time we moved we used a water proof barrier that is usually used for kids who wet the bed, under the carriers on the car seat.
  8. My big guy (17 lbs) travels in a large hard sided carrier, but my other cats travel in soft-sided carriers. Nabu really has a preference for the soft-sided ones.
post #6 of 7
Last Christmas we drove from Virginia to Oklahoma and back with Riley. It was 10-12 hours the first day, stop overnight at a hotel and then 8 hours or so the 2nd day.

When we stopped for meals I would offer Riley food and water but he didn't want any. I also offered him a disposable litter tray which he peed in once but that was it. Once he got settled in the hotel at night then he would eat, use the box, run around and play, etc. but for the most part he just slept during the drive.
post #7 of 7
When we moved my sis' cats from CA to TN, they traveled in large crates, with a shoe-box "porta-potty". We used newspapers at first, because one of the boys did get diarrhea at first, from the stress. But by New Mexico, all was fine - meowing was at a minimum & adjustments went well - much smoother than we had anticipated.
As a prep, though, they were feed for the prior couple of weeks in their carriers.
If you can get them used to leashes, that'd be a big plus, too.
Whichever journey you take, sending pleasant moving prayers and vibes out to you all
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