Concerned about moving with my cat

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-14-2013
Concerned about moving with my cat
4
Sun, 04-14-2013 - 9:01am

Hello all.

I am going to retire in a couple of months and in September I plan to move to Utah from Pennsylvania to live with my daughter and her husband.

I have a beautiful, approximately five-year-old calico cat that was given to me a few years ago. She has always been an indoor cat. I am concerned about how she will handle traveling that far and also how she will adapt in a household with five other cats. I thought a large cage into which I can put food and a small litter box would be the best way to go, as well as giving her some type of tranquilizer. However, I don't know if I can fit a cage large enough for her to be comfortable into my car.

I am really concerned about this. I don't want to put her into a shelter. She came from a shelter originally and she is a very good cat and has been a comfort and a great companion to me. Does anyone have any suggestions regarding these two concerns? I would appreciate any advice you can give.

Community Leader
Registered: 03-24-2000
Sun, 04-14-2013 - 10:03am

Welcome to Cats and Kittens.  Most of the time moving a cat isn't as much of a problem as you think.  Once they get used to being in the car and riding they just sleep.  The first hour or so may be a little scared they they usually settle in.  You could purchase a big cage for her and keep all of her things in it while in the car.  When you stop at night and get a room, then you could bring her and all of her things in the room with you. Just be sure to keep her in the cage or a carrier when taking her to your room every night.  If she has a litter box in her cage there would be no reason to let her out of it during the day when you are traveling.  Many cats have escaped that way when people let them out of their carrier and in the car when they stop for gas or what ever.

Introducing her to your daughter's five cats is going to be a challenge.  Once you get to her house, I would set her things up in a room of her own.  It can be your room too.  I would let her settle in at least a week before you start introducing her very slowly to the other cats.  It may take a couple of months for her to get used to them and them used to her.  Don't just throw her in with them and hope for the best.  Once you get moved come back and we can post a good introduction method for you.


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iVillage Member
Registered: 04-14-2013
Sun, 04-14-2013 - 2:30pm
Very excellent suggestions. Thank you so much.
Avatar for tiggs_mom
Community Leader
Registered: 07-02-1999
Sun, 04-14-2013 - 8:56pm

Welcome to Cats & Kittens.

Just this past summer I helped a friend move from Ohio to Utah. We moved a packed Honda Civic with 2 cats and her very large lab. We had the cats in their carriers and honestly, they were fine. The younger travels often as she is actually my friend's daughter's cat and while she lived with her parents, she went to school in Montreal - Winnie traveled a lot so we eventually put on her harness and leash and let her sit with the passenger or on top or in her carrier.

There are some good mid sized wire crates that would fit in your car with all her "stuff". I have seen some cats on transports where they rig a hammock for the cat to lay on the  hangs half way up the crate to give the cat more space.

Either way, having moved myself from Ohio to Texas and back, it isn't so bad. I would start now getting her used to the carrier and short trips. For most cats, the only time they are in the car is for trips to the vet so getting her used to the idea that the vet isn't the only destination is a good idea. And for stops, you can't beat Motel 6 for animal friendly.

As for introductions, Leslie had it right - I would set up her stuff in your room so everything seems familiar - your things and her things. And then start the introductions. Petfinder has a great article for introducing cats here: http://www.petfinder.com/cats/bringing-a-cat-home/cat-to-cat-introductions/

Good luck - on retiring, moving and introductions. Keep us posted and tell us more about your girl.

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Community Leader
Registered: 03-24-2000
Tue, 04-16-2013 - 10:14am

You're welcome.  

Good luck on your move and have a wonderful retirement. 

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