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Moving soon - Vets along the way?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hi All-

I will be moving soon, from New York to Raleigh, NC. The drive is about 8 1/2 hours, and I have been trying to get my 14 year old kitty used to being in the car by driving him around where I live for about an hour at a time. We plan to discuss sedatives with our vet, but he has a heart murmur and I am concerned for his health - I know it will be extrememly stressful for him, and I need to make this as stress free as possible. Even in one hour long drives he tends to freak out.

I am wondering if there is any easy way to get a list of veterinarians that will be along our driving route, just in case we need to pull off the road and get him to a vet asap? We will be taking I-95 for the bulk of the trip, which goes through Baltimore, Washington, DC, Richmond, VA, but I want to know locations of vets every 10-20 miles along the way.

I appreciate any help anyone can offer. It looks like there are a lot of people here with cat moving experience, and any advice/testamonials are welcome!!
post #2 of 9
I can understand your concern, but that might be almost next to impossible to find vets every 10-20 miles along the way. Most vets are not directly off the highway and may even be into towns that are 15 or 20 mins from I-95.

While they have hospital signs along the road, there are no vet signs. Unless you know some people along the way or nearby, I honestly don't know how you would find out that info for short notice emergencys.

Just pray your cat will be ok for the trip. If he's on any meds now, be sure to have extra supply from your vet now.
post #3 of 9
Well, it certainly wouldn't hurt to "google" or "dogpile" a search of each major town and look for the vets in those towns. Just be aware that many vets aren't listed on-line yet...mine is there but almost impossible for me to find, and I know the vets name and the name of the clinic!

Hopefully some people here at TCS who live in those areas can help give you some contacts. And if you end up having any trouble along the way, just check at the gas stations, maybe they would know of a local vet.
post #4 of 9
I can tell you a good amount of vets from DC to Richmond, if that would help.

post #5 of 9
Wouldn't it just be easier to not sedate? I drove my two kittens from northern Colorado to San Diego last month, in a compact car stuffed full of stuff, and they were pretty ok with the 20 hour trip.
post #6 of 9
The problem with sedation on a cat is that they tend to act unpredictible to the meds.

And even if you google a search, unless you are familiar with the street names and where they are located compared to I-95, you would not know which exit or roads to take to find the vet.

As much as I know this will be an unpopular suggetion, you might consider having a close cat friend adopt your elderly cat instead of taking her with you. I've been in your situation. When I moved I had two older cats - one was 12, other was 14 (at the time). The 12 yr old was a seasoned show cat and was very used to traveling - so no problem with him. My 14 yr old also was a show cat but she retired early from showing as she hated car rides and would get sick within 10 mins of driving.

I knew she could not tolerate a very long distance drive when we moved. So after much consideration, I talked to a good cat friend of mine that was willing to adopt her because she has several older cats. She's much happier and still living (she will be 17 yrs old this July). I miss her, but know she would have never made the trip in moving.
post #7 of 9
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your responses.

I'd rather not sedate, but I do want to discuss all options with my vet on how to make this move easiest for him. His health and well being factored in greatly on our decision to move to NC as opposed to somewhere further away. Giving my kitty (my son!!) to someone else and moving without him is definitely not an option.

I have a soft bag carrier in which he can turn around and sit up (tho not completely straight up). I like it because it has side flaps that can be either up or down, and i can have it on the passenger seat and pet him if he gets upset, but I am thinking that maybe I should get a larger carrier so that he has more room to move around - perhaps it will make the ride easier if he isn't so confined?
post #9 of 9
I know some people buy a small dog crate, so there is room for a small litter box inside the cage. If you get it now, you can set it up in her favorite room, and maybe she will get used to the cage. Then just set it on the back seat, or passenger seat (with the seat moved all the way back).

For an 8-1/2 hour drive, kitty needs a litterbox. Also, when you stop for gas, you can offer him food and water.
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