How to Choose the Right Type of Cat Carrier
If you’ve ever had to put a typical cat into a cat carrier to transport them somewhere, there’s a fair possibility that you will have ended up with a few cuts and scratches as you do so – and it’s not hard to see why.
Cats love adventure and wide-open spaces, but they also love cosy small areas if they are there out of choice – so, why don’t cats seem to like carriers?
Unlike dogs, cats are not used to being transported and this can cause a lot of stress for them.
Cats are a lot faster and more skittish than dogs in general, and when they are not happy, they tend to run away or panic. As you can imagine, trying to drive down a road with an unhappy cat bouncing around the interior is recipe for disaster. Unfortunately, occasional trips to the vet can’t be avoided and so it’s important to make the journey as relaxing as possible for them, and this can be accomplished by buying the right cat carrier.
Choose The Right Type of Cat Carrier
Cat carriers generally come in two materials, either hard plastic or nylon. The general rule is that nylon carriers are more suitable for calmer cats, although it is important that they have a flat bottom to prevent it from flexing. Plastic carriers, on the other hand are better for cats who are prone to stress as they are stronger and come with a steel door.
Choose The Right Size
The key to choosing the right size when buying cat carrier is to ensure that it is roughly 1.5x the size of your cat. This means that there is enough space for your cat to turn around if necessary, but not too much room that your they slide around inside.
Make It Comfortable
Regardless of whether you buy a plastic carrier or a soft carrier, it is important that it is lined with comfortable blankets that helps the cat feel at home. This will make the journey much easier to deal with.
Multiple Access Points
While nearly all hard plastic carriers offer a steel access door at the front, the best carriers also offer access from the top. If you carrier has an access point on top, this makes it much easier to remove the cat once your reach your destination.
Make Sure It’s Ventilated
Luckily, all carriers that are on sale are designed with vents to ensure that your cat has access to fresh air. A lack of airflow can not only cause your cat to overheat, but also cause them harm if they begin to hyper-ventilate from the stress.
Get A Decent Cover
When you are using a carrier for your cat, being taken out of the house can be quite traumatic for them. This can be helped by placing a dense blanket over the carrier whilst in public, and whilst waiting in the vet’s office. The darkness and lack of stimuli helps them to relax and reduces stress.
Tips for Choosing a Cat Carrier
- If you need to secure your cat in their carrier while you are driving, try buying a cat carrier that offers seat belt holes so that it can be fixed in place.
- Plastic cat carriers are much more easy to clean than nylon carriers, so bear this in mind if your cat enjoys making a mess.
- Buy each cat their own carrier, and never put more than one cat into a single unit. Cats are generally solitary animals, and two panicked cats in a single carrier is unlikely to go well.
- By choosing a cat carrier that has great aesthetics, you can use the carrier as a place for your cat to rest while you are at home – reducing the stress they will feel if they have to go travelling.
- While you should generally avoid food for a few hours prior to a car journey with your cat to prevent them from vomiting, you can buy carriers that allow for food and water bowls so that your cat doesn’t get too dehydrated during your travels.
In short, buying a cat carrier is never going to be a blissful experience if your cat is behaves similarly to the majority of cats out there. But it is always worth making the effort to make sure that your cat can avoid stress as best as possible whenever they need to be taken out of the house.
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