What's the Best Way to Roadtrip with Cats?? [Archive] - Honda Element Owners Club Forum

: What's the Best Way to Roadtrip with Cats??


joe1347
02-22-2004, 12:03 AM
Any suggestions on ways to outfit/configure the Element for a long roadtrip with two cats?

Initially, I was thinking of purchasing a large wire mesh dog crate and loading both of the "happy travelers" in it. I'd pull one (or both) of the rear seats to make room for the crate.

Another thought was to pull both rear seats and just let the cats loose to make themselves "comfortable". This configuration would allow plenty of room for their favorite beds, blankets, boxes, etc. in the back. Since, the back of the Element is accessible without opening any doors - I could then transfer the cats to their carriers or attach a leash during stops or carrying them into a motel.

Redactor
02-24-2004, 09:34 AM
Hi there...

Perhaps you could put up a mesh backing between the cargo space and the back seats. Something like you might find to keep groceries from pitching forward in a collision.

I'm not sure where you would find that...

but a crate sounds pretty practical...

music&dogs
02-24-2004, 09:45 AM
I vote for a crate, one as large as you can possibly fit with anything else you're putting in the back of the E. Tie it down securely for safety's sake. The crate would be big enough to hold a small litter box and give them lots of room for walking around. Put familiar bedding from home in it so they'll smell the scents of home and it will help them settle down more quickly into living in this temporary environment. How any cats and how far are you traveling? Where will they stay once you get there? Once they get used to it, having a livable sized crate would give them the feeling of having a home away from home rather than changing their immediate environment constantly. Reducing their anxiety will relieve you of a lot of problems as you travel. Wishing you a fun trip.......:-)

Stick
02-24-2004, 10:56 AM
based on said experience, DO NOT let the cats 'roam freely' in the back of your car. I tried that ONCE, and almost got killed as a result. Cats, apparently, do not enjoy riding in cars and will not sit quietly or sleep while the car's in motion. The cat I was transporting decided that the floor by my feet would be the best place to hide til the trip was over. Obviously, driving on a highway with a cat behind/under one's throttle, clutch, and brake pedals is NOT a safe way to travel. What should have been a 90 minute trip took nearly three times as long because I had no way of confining the cat.

NOTE: this was not my cat, but a stray kitten that I'd taken in while in college. The trip described above occurred while I was taking the cat to my mom's house because one of her friends was going to 'adopt' him.

If I had it to do over again, I would definitely!! use a crate and not necessarilly a big one. Just one (or two in your case) big enough for each cat to fit in comfortably. I think the prospect of driving with two cats in a giant dog crate with litterbox is, at best, a messy proposition.

That said, I'm not sure why you want to take your cats with you on a roadtrip. They don't travel well, and it seems like more trouble than it's worth. You (& the cats) might be better off going to a kennel or leaving them with friends or family while you're away. Then again, what do I know? I'm a dog person anyway. :roll:

Fizzyrider
03-06-2004, 03:54 PM
I train my cats to stay off the drivers side and off the dash. usually the first trip they cry for maybe an hour, then they go to sleep. I have one that sleeps in whoevers lap is available, or on your neck against the head rest. The other just sleeps on the blanket in the back. 15 hour trip with the cats and no problems.

Charles, AC6WU
04-29-2004, 10:55 AM
My cat travels very well! He has been comfortable traveling since he was a kitten. If you train your kitty from kittenhood, he will be quite at home in the car. (You MUST trim the claws to be safe. They are used for traction while cornering and the seats are not immune to such goings on.)

"Magic" sleeps on the rear seat which he has claimed for his own. Sometimes he wants to rest in my lap while driving. This is discouraged quickly as even trimmed claws can be quite annoying.

A secrued, enclosed litter box is good to have in the rear storage. It helps to confine him while doing his business at 65 mph around the curves in the road.

Ideally, a box or some type of container should be used for transporting the cat. A sudden stop can produce a phenomenon known as the flying cat, an exiting experience while in your Element. Guess what's on the end of each leg...and traveling at 65 mph? Did you remember to trim them? Even so, they have grown an inch or more since the application of the brakes.

At any rate, have a good time traveling with your cat. Leave room for some fresh air!! Cats bury their goods for a reason.

Dasbear
04-30-2004, 07:50 AM
8) I prefer a large Dutch Oven, Lime, lots of Garlic.

:lol: Just Kidding!
Small crate with its favorite toy, plenty water, small amount of food. Rosa goes to sleep but then she also thinks she's a dog. Plays with them and has been caught sleeping on the same pad. Raise with dogs since she was a kitten.

:shock: Slug

CSK
05-24-2004, 11:03 AM
Our two cats tend to travel better when put in the same crate. Don't get me wrong, they are not the best of friends and they don't sleep together normally, but when traveling I think it makes them feel more secure. A small crate with enough room for the two of them is what we use. I take a towel that I have used and put it in the bottom of the crate.

id: 635
05-24-2004, 12:19 PM
CSK: do you keep a litter box in the car for long trips ??????

also - i PM'd you - Annette Painter wants to talk to you personally

LEGO MY E
08-20-2004, 11:46 PM
Cat survives car roof-top journey

A cat has escaped injury despite clinging to the roof of a car travelling at 60mph for four miles.

Staff nurse Adria Bryan couldn't understand why other drivers flashed their lights at her as she sped to work in Rhyl, North Wales.

When she finally pulled over she was horrified to find her cat Joe on top of her Ford Escort., says The Sun.

She said: "I must have been doing 60. Joe clung on for dear life with his claws to the groove at the top of the rear door. It's unbelievable.

"I realised something was wrong when other people flashed their lights. I thought I may have left my handbag on the roof but I checked and it was on the seat next to me so I carried on.

"I even passed a police car with the cat on my roof but he didn't flash his lights at me.

"Finally one lad overtook me and I thought he was going to cut in front. Then he leaned across looking shocked - and pointed at my car roof."

A couple of days later the cat had another brush with death after it was attacked by a bull terrier...

Source: http://www.ananova.com/news/story/sm_962503.html?menu=news.quirkies.animaltales

crass751
10-18-2004, 11:03 PM
My girlfriend and I just spent about 5 hours in the E with our cat this weekend. For the most part he either sat on her lap and slept, or slept on the back seat. Occasionally he'd think about crawling down by my feet, but the girlfriend would grab him before he had the chance. He was not a happy cat for the first hour, but after that he was fine.

Lowanhair
10-20-2004, 03:05 PM
Kitty Valium :D
I've always given it to my dogs when we had to fly. I guess it would work for
long road trips as well.

E Wagon
01-08-2005, 08:29 PM
Haven't had our furry bundle of joy in the Element yet. But I do remember coasting to a stop the side of the road once with a cat tangled in my feet/pedals. Can't really blame him, if he's in the car, he's going to the vet. I would go with a crate, or at least have someone else to watch the cat while you drive.

MtHoodE
01-14-2005, 08:22 PM
It all depends on the cat. One of mine is typically miserable and a PITA when in the car. He gets the crate and howls until he's home.

The other one is like a dog. He sits on the dashboard and hangs out. He hates being in the crate, especially in the car but if he's free to roam he'll just pick a good place to look out and chill. We moved from Michigan to Oregon in a U-Haul and he had a great time.

One thing we found that was very nice for the long trips was disposable litter boxes. I found them at the grocery store. They're kind of flimsy plastic with some litter in the bottom and a piece of paper to keep the litter in place. Just peel the paper off, let the little bugger do his thing and then throw it out. That way you don't have the disastrous mess if you hit the brakes.

Now for the disclaimer: not all cats are alike - only you know if your cat should be allowed to roam free in a moving vehicle. Make sure they wear seat belts or bolt a padded cage to the floor and put them in there. With seat belts. And little helmets. When your cat clamps on to your headrest with 3 paws and your ear with the 4th, calmly pull over and park the car before extracting him.

Hondamade4dogs
01-16-2005, 08:36 AM
Cats! Cats in the E ???.......Get a roof rack and tie the cat on top of the E.......ha ha ha....just kidding......Crate it in the rear, :grin:

ELEMENTDUDE
01-16-2005, 08:41 AM
Leash them on the back seat. Make sure the leash is long enough that if they jump down they won't hang themselves!! Meoooow..

ELEMENTDUDE
01-16-2005, 08:42 AM
Or better yet, use a harness!! That way you won't have to worry about a hanging death. Meooow...

trickyvick
01-16-2005, 10:45 AM
I typically use an ice chest...but I have been thinking of getting one of those 12 v coolers........



So many cats....so few recipes!

lemonadeking
01-20-2005, 09:56 AM
:evil: :evil: :evil:

Leave cats on leash, tie leash firmly to rear bumper, proceed on trip as usual

Hondamade4dogs
01-21-2005, 07:26 AM
In a Wok ! :lol:

MiHoMiPa
02-03-2005, 03:01 PM
All cats are different, and therefore will react differently to various situations. I had one cat that loved to stretch out across the dashboard of my Bronco right in front of the steering wheel - watching the world go by without a care in the world. It would drive my dog crazy (a doberman at the time) because the two of them were inseperable and the dog hated having the cat way up front when she was stuck in '3rd class' in the back. When I stopped for lunch on a road trip, it would always be McD's, where the cat got her own order of fries and the dog got a plain cheeseburger - they would sit on the tailgate of the Bronco together, eating their treats.

I had one that wanted to cling to me for dear life, and was usually calm enough after about 30 minutes to just be happy in my lap. Luckily he didn't travel much in a car, although the flight from Australia to the US to Portugal nearly did him in. Well, actually, it was being put on the conveyor belt with the luggage in Portugal that nearly gave him a heart attack!

I had another cat that was a howling idiot in a crate in the car, but would happily lay in the passenger seat and occassionally get up to look out the passenger window. Probably due to her airline flight from Japan to the US. It seems airline travel and cats really just do not get along.

The two we currently have are worlds apart in temperment, and do not get along at all. One would probably lay on the nearest and most accommodating lap. The other would be climbing the walls, windows, and people inside the car, howling to beat the band. Times have changed, so have many state laws, so all the critters are in a crate when traveling now. In hind sight, it should have always been that way just for safety's sake when it came to the animals.

The cats each go in their own crate, with the dog in her own crate in between them. The mellow one will go in her crate willingly, and lays around in it until we get where we are going. The cranky one has to be put into the crate with one person holding front legs and crate, another person holding back legs and crate door. It isn't a pretty sight. She then howls for the first 3 hours, and for the remainder of the trip, she howls about 1 hour each time we start out after stopping for gas, rest stop, for the night, whatever. She is too old to safely mediate though, in my opinion.

When we stop for the night, they come into the motel with us, or our camper if we are towing it - that's when they get access to litter pan, food, water. When we stop for rest areas, we offer them water, but they never take it. We have never had one pee or poo in their crate. The dog won't go if she's on a leash - for some stupid reason. So she has often gone two whole days without peeing or pooping because I'm not about to let her loose at a highway rest area. The exception to that is the rest stops (very few of these) that have the chain link fenced area available for pets - if the weather is nice we let her run around one of those as long as there isn't poo from 20 other dogs in there - no telling what she'll pick up by walking around one of those places. She also refuses water when we travel, although will drink a small amount in the hotel/camper when we stop for the night.

Only you as the owner knows how your animal may likely react to a situation - then again - it may suprise you. Kenneling is an option, but perhaps your animals would react worse to that than a long car trip. I know I've never had an animal that would have rather been in a kennel than with me, despite a long road or airplane trip.

Everything I've read about chinchillas claims they should NOT travel, that it is better to have someone else care for them in your absence. Our chinchillas have been on two long car trips - both about 700 miles, and have done well - don't even seem to notice the difference. They aren't as happy in the 'travel cage' because their normal home is a huge cabinet with six shelves to jump around on, etc, but they don't seem to realize that the cage is in a moving vehicle. Chins are very intelligence, you can loose their trust easily, they have a long memory and their trust, once lost, will take a long time to gain back, and they are very attached to their owners. I felt the stress of having someone new taking care of them would be as great or greater than the stress of a trip - it seems there is no stress in a trip for them at all - at least my chins.

Bottom line, you'll have to be the best judge of how your animals will behave and what method is best for them. If you choose not to crate them, you may want to look at the state laws in each state you will travel through - some states require animals be in a crate, some just require they be 'restrained'. Also, if you choose not to crate them, it may be best to try a few 'around the neighborhood trips' first, and see how they will react.

In regards to crate size, I'd go with small - cats like confined spaces, they feel safer in smaller areas, which is why they tend to hide under the bed, in closets, etc. Think of that when choosing a crate size - individual crates would also be better than one large crate for both. Although they may get along great in the house, put them in a crate in a moving vehicle and they may pull each other's fur out climbing over each other trying to get out of the crate.

gfxguy
02-03-2005, 09:59 PM
Remember what happened to the dog in the first National Lampoon's Vacation movie? That's my suggestion.

Phreaxer
02-06-2005, 08:45 PM
Nobody else has posted it, so I guess I will have to do the honors.

http://www.prosoundweb.com/fun/Photofun/38_cat_carrier.jpg

Genom
02-06-2005, 10:20 PM
http://www.geocities.com/genomindustries/uglycat-2312.jpg
"That is not how I want to travel!!!"







I'm a "cat person" and I still find this thread funny.:D

PVR
02-06-2005, 11:55 PM
Send them as cargo, leave them home, find a cat sitter or give them away would be my advice.

I still have the scars from moving two of the buggers across the country a few years ago. Two recaptures from escapes during pee breaks (for the cat not me) resulted in me still having to explain that I have not been an attempted suicide from the slit marks on my arms. :x

I flew them next time. Love the cats but they are pains as travel companions.

cindyt
02-28-2005, 08:06 PM
I would do a small test run before a long trip. I had a cat that did not travel well at all. I had to line her cage with newspaper because she would always pee in it. Car travelling freaked her out. I tried a larger cage with a litter box but she did not use it. So I had to develop a system where I pulled over every time she wet her cage so that I could pull the top layers of the paper out and into a plastic bag. If I didn't she would get very messy and howl.

camping cat
05-01-2005, 11:03 AM
(pushed the wrong key will try again)
my 16 month old cat- ONYX -has been from KY to MINN, AZ, VA, FLA and TX so is a seasoned traveler. He rides best in a "small" (his size) soft side carrier that I initially let him get used to at home - it is no bigger than a purse - If left out in the car when moving he will consistantly get car sick UGH!

I started with short trips around town so that he learned the trip would eventually end. I also learned that he has a music preference for high acoustic jug band music and he now dictates which CD I start each trip with.
He fusses longer on his way out of town but when I pack up to return home from a camping trip all I have to say if "going home" and he sleeps till I turn into the drive

At rest stops he is on a leash and has time for a walk, food, drink, and use his litterbox - he can go up to 6 - 8 hours without using the litter box - but I can't (you know what I mean) - He is on a leash, sits and watches me fish, loves to walk the campground, and stops at every site expecting to be petted. The elemant is the perfect cabin at night as he is free to roam and as I sleep he can access food, water, and the litterbox (open on the floor under the steering wheel)

I got a cat instead of a dog because of inability at times to walk without difficulty, but he "demands" his morning and evening walks, even in the winter and you know what happens if cats don't get their way so I just give in and go - good therapy for me

I'd love to hear from other cat owners who think their cats are "pit bulls" like mine does. He's never been afraid of a dog-----

ICHING
05-05-2005, 01:18 PM
http://shop.store.yahoo.com/midnightpassinc/kien.html

Place 6' Kittywalk on plastic tarp, insert cat, bedding :) and cat box.

Dexobie
06-15-2005, 01:16 PM
Why go thru the trouble. Just leave them at home. When you get back, if they are dead, look in the paper, there are always free ones. Hahaha!!!


http://images.buzznet.com/assets/users6/nrfitz/default/gallery-msg-1108442846-2.jpg

mrsilly
06-15-2005, 01:53 PM
freeze them overnight, and then you can just keep them in a plastic bag.

Boxy05
06-15-2005, 07:09 PM
(pushed the wrong key will try again)
my 16 month old cat- ONYX -has been from KY to MINN, AZ, VA, FLA and TX so is a seasoned traveler. He rides best in a "small" (his size) soft side carrier that I initially let him get used to at home - it is no bigger than a purse - If left out in the car when moving he will consistantly get car sick UGH!

I started with short trips around town so that he learned the trip would eventually end. I also learned that he has a music preference for high acoustic jug band music and he now dictates which CD I start each trip with.
He fusses longer on his way out of town but when I pack up to return home from a camping trip all I have to say if "going home" and he sleeps till I turn into the drive

At rest stops he is on a leash and has time for a walk, food, drink, and use his litterbox - he can go up to 6 - 8 hours without using the litter box - but I can't (you know what I mean) - He is on a leash, sits and watches me fish, loves to walk the campground, and stops at every site expecting to be petted. The elemant is the perfect cabin at night as he is free to roam and as I sleep he can access food, water, and the litterbox (open on the floor under the steering wheel)

I got a cat instead of a dog because of inability at times to walk without difficulty, but he "demands" his morning and evening walks, even in the winter and you know what happens if cats don't get their way so I just give in and go - good therapy for me

I'd love to hear from other cat owners who think their cats are "pit bulls" like mine does. He's never been afraid of a dog-----

Our main cat is also named Onyx. He thinks our three dogs are his "cousins" so in the winter when we let our dogs in to lay by the fireplace while we read or watch tv, Onyx will walk up to them and try and touch noses with them. I don't think he's not afraid of dogs because he stays away from our neighbors' yards with dogs.