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Don't Have a Car Journey 'Cat'astrophe!

Don't Have a Car Journey 'Cat'astrophe!


The 8th August is International Cat Day, which. apart from being a great excuse to share gratuitous kitty-pix, got us wondering; why do cats seem to hate cars?

5 Tips for taking your cat on a car journey

Unlike dogs, cats have a reputation for an intense dislike of car journeys. Here are 5 tips to help make your next car trip with your kitty less of a catastrophe!

  • Play on their love of food - feed them their meals in your car for a few days before your trip.
  • Make them feel at home - put a familiar blanket that smells of them in their pet carrier
  • Let them explore - if they have a roam around your car they'll see it's nothing to be scared of.
  • Take them on a practice trip - take them out on short trips round the block to familiarise them.
  • Always use a pet carrier - don't give in and let them roam lose in your car, it's dangerous

Why do cats seem to hate cars?

It’s International Cat Day on 8th August, which apart from being a great excuse to share some gorgeous, random pictures of lovable kitties and kittens, got us wondering; why is it that our pampered pooches seem to love a car journey, while our cuddly kitties just don’t feel the same.

CAt relaxed and asleep on csar running boardCats are very contrary and whilst they’re happy to lie on a nice warm car bonnet, or curl up on a tyre, it’s a different matter when you’re off on you holidays and kitty’s coming too. Then your fluffy feline will suddenly turn into a hissing, spitting ball of ‘cat’titude as you try to pop him/her onto your backseat; half an hour later you’re still battling and it’s all a bit of a ‘cat’astrophe – sorry!

Why is this, when dogs seem to relish a car journey? It could be something bred in to today’s domestic cats as they’re directly descended from the Middle Eastern wildcat. This cat is solitary, very territorial and as a matter of survival has a string of daily routines.

This could explain why our ‘purr’fect pets just don’t fancy the idea of a car ride – they relish their routines and anything that alters them is to be feared and fought against. As humans many of us like routine and become stressed when things don’t go according to plan; this is probably exactly how your preciously ‘paw’fect kitty is feeling.

Cat asleep on a car roof

Domestic cats tend to have a territory which they patrol and stay within, so taking them out of that territory into the ‘outside world’ can be really rather scary.

This is probably not going to make you feel any better when you’re clearing up kitty sick or if your furry friend has had a little ’accident’.

Tips to make your car a less scary place for your kitty:

Two cats on a car bonnet

  • Make your car a positive place for your cat. Feed them their meals in your car for a few days, we all know cats are famed for their ‘cupboard love’ if they think food or treats are coming their way when they get in the car, they’ll be jumping in of their own accord!
  • Put a small blanket in your cat’s home basket and when you’re taking kitty on trip put the blanket inside the pet carrier, that way it’ll smell like home.
  • Let them explore the inside of your car, before you put them in their carrier. This will make your car a much more familiar place and your fluffy friend will see it’s not a place to be scared of.
  • If you’re going on a long journey then some pre-trip training is a good idea; pop kitty into the carrier and take some short trips around the block each day. That way your curious kitty will learn that they do get back to their territory eventually.
  • No matter how tempting it is to your precious puss sit on someone’s knee in the back of the car, you MUST not let you kitty loose whilst you’re on the move. AS we all know cats are quick movers and can get into very tight spaces; kitty could easily wind itself round your feet and the pedals and cause an accident.

Two cats in a pet carrier