Wondering how to ship a cat and keep it happy while you take the scenic route or relocate to another state? You might be looking forward to the road trip, eating at top-ten diners, drive-ins, and dives—or just going off-road for scenic overlooks. But your kitty won’t be amused. Meow. You need to know how to ship your cat.
1. Consider Reasons for Cat Transport
Most cats don’t travel well. A change in routine and an adventurous long-distance road trip can stress out your cat. And it might take a while for it to befriend you again.
Although air transportation might be an option, restrictions vary with airlines. And if you’re not traveling with your cat, an air cargo experience can traumatize your furry friend. Cat transportation offers a solution for a variety of life’s changes:
- Relocation – If you’re relocating several states away, or if you want to get organized before you welcome your cat to your new home, cat transport will accommodate you.
- Extended vacation – Are you flying to your vacation spot, but your cat hates takeoffs, landings, and being stuck in a carrier under the seat in front of you? You both can relax. Enjoy your flight to your vacation home and arrange ground transportation for your cat.
- Long-term assignment – A long-term work assignment that’s hundreds of miles away can add adventure to your summer. After you’re comfortable with your accommodations and know it’s safe for your pet, door-to-door cat transportation will make the transition smooth.
- Pet purchase or adoption – You’ve found the perfect cat, but you’re on the east coast, and your newfound pet is in the Midwest. No problem. Cat transport will pick up your precious cargo from the breeder and deliver it to you. And if you’re adopting a rescue pet—or inheriting a cat from a family member—long-distance transportation for pets saves you the drive and the travel time. Visit the American Veterinary Medical Association website for more tips on how to plan for successful pet adoption.
2. Prepare for Cat Shipping
How do you prepare your cat for shipping? Keep it comfortable in these ways:
- Thorough checkup – Take your cat to the vet to ensure it’s healthy enough to travel. Ask for a health certificate and ensure your cat has the vaccinations or medications it needs before the trip.
- Accurate identification – Get a customized tag and collar for your cat and include a leash. Some pet owners also get a microchip for the animal. Ensure your contact information on the ID tags is current.
- Comfortable crate – Choose a comfy crate or carrier for cat shipping. Label the crate, pad it, and add a few favorite toys or distractions that your cat loves. Buy the carrier in advance and put the comfort items in it. Give your cat time to get used to the environment.
- Quality food and water – Give your cat the quality food and water it deserves on a long-distance trip. And give it what it eats and drinks at home. Altering your cat’s diet while it’s in transit can make it irritable.
- As-needed sedation – You know your cat’s temperament. Although pet transportation drivers love animals, if you’ve owned your cat for a while, you can probably predict its reaction to being shipped on a long-distance ride with a stranger. Consult with your veterinarian to help you decide if sedation is appropriate for your pet.
3. Select a Cat Transportation Service
It’s easy to find a service that transports cats. But you’ll have to do some homework to find the right service to ship your pet. Before scheduling a date and signing a contract, ask questions:
- What paperwork is required for cat transport?
- How long will travel take?
- How do you handle travel during adverse weather?
- How frequently will you give me a status on your travel and my cat’s well-being?
- Do you have crate or kennel requirements for shipping a cat?
- What’s your schedule for feeding, exercise, and potty breaks?
- Are your cat shipping vehicles climate controlled?
- Where will my cat be located during the ride?
- What are your rates? Are there additional fees?
- What forms of payment do you accept? And when is payment due?
Transport Your Cat with Peace of Mind
How to ship a cat? You can safely ship your cat in style with Pet Van Lines ground transportation services. You’ll have peace of mind knowing that your cat’s transport experience includes:
- Drivers who care about animals
- A climate-controlled van
- Access to a fresh, clean litter box
Contact us for more information about our services or request a quote today.