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Travelling is already stressful enough. There is so much you have to plan for yourself and so many elements that can go wrong. Plus, if you have cats at home, you have to figure out who will take care of them while you’re gone. It would be so much easier to bring them with you! One cat might be easy to travel with but, can you bring two cats on a plane?
Yes, you can bring two cats on a plane. Most airlines have weight and dimension limits when traveling with multiple cats. Both cats also have to fit inside the same carrier comfortably and be the same species.
However, it is not as easy as backing a bag for your kitties and bringing them with you. Airlines have several rules and restrictions to keep everyone safe. Plus, there is certain preparation you should do for your cat to ensure they have the best journey. To help alleviate your traveling stress, here is a guide on traveling with two cats.
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How Do You Travel With Two Cats
First things first, take your cats to the vet. Your cats will need to have a checkup performed to ensure they are safe to travel. This visit entails checking them for fleas and ticks and any other skin conditions that could become aggravated. They will also be checked for any internal illnesses. This internal check will also make sure their hearts and lungs are strong enough to withstand the stress of traveling and the changes in air pressure when flying.
Then, you will want to research which airline is the best option for you. Each airline has different rules for how you can travel with your pet.
Researching all of their different rules will help make sure you and your pet are comfortable traveling. Some airlines allow your pet to travel in your seat with you or as cargo. If you are traveling with them as cargo, they will be placed with the other luggage, so make sure that it will not scare your furry friend. Also, ensure they have a nice sturdy cage in case they experience some turbulence and get a little jostled around.
If you are opting to travel with your cat on your lap, research which airlines allow two cats to be in one carrier. Some airlines specify that each cat has their own carrier. If this is the case, you will have to purchase another seat next to you for your second carrier to sit in. If they allow two cats in one carrier, then you can typically hold the carrier on your lap.
If you don’t think your cats will get along or be comfortable in the same carrier, then the best option is to purchase the seat next to you and bring them each in their own carrier. Keep in mind that most airlines will not let you open the carrier while you are flying. This means that you will not be able to pop it open to check on your cat or keep your hand in there to pet them and soothe them.
How Much Does It Cost To Fly With Two Cats
The cost of flying with two cats is going to vary based on the airline you use. Each airline requires a different fee for traveling with pets, and they all seem to range within $100-$200. So essentially, you will have to pay for your plane ticket and an additional fee for your cat.
If the airline requires you to purchase an additional seat for your second cat, you will have to factor this into your budget. Plus, if your cat makes a mess on the plane, for example, urinates or defecates somewhere, you may be charged cleaning fees as well.
Some airlines also require a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection, which is sometimes also referred to as a pet passport. A vet visit before a trip is going to be mandatory, and these cost a significant amount themselves. Certain airlines may also ask for specific tests for certification, which can cost extra.
You should also consider the cost of preparing your cats for a comfortable trip. You may have to purchase new carriers for them that are sturdy, so they cannot easily be bumped into. You may also want to purchase some padding or blankets to put in the bottom of your cat’s carrier so they can be comfortable while you are traveling. Depending on how long your flight is, you will also need to bring food and treats for them, and airlines will have specific rules for how you can do this.
Should Cats Be Sedated For Air Travel
Cats should never be sedated for air travel! There are far too many risks involved in sedating your cats for air travel and not enough benefits. Many owners think sedation will make the trip easier, but it proposes several health risks to your cat. Cabin pressure frequently changes during a flight, especially if your cats are traveling in the cargo area. Sedation already affects their hearts and lungs, with the added element of the air pressure changing; they can experience life-threatening effects to their hearts and lungs.
If you have never given your cat a sedative before, now is not the time to try. All cats react differently; some become more energized when given a sedative. These drastic changes to their heart rates, plus the stress of being somewhere new, can lead to deadly consequences. Most cats that have been sedated on flights have needed medical assistance to recover properly. Unfortunately, some never recover at all.
Never sedate your cats before a flight. Use other methods to soothe them for their trip. Get them used to their carrier, being around other people, and loud noises. Put toys and blankets with familiar smells in their carriers so it will feel more like home. Give them yummy treats and food to keep them full and content. Speak to them softly, so they know you are there to keep them safe and protected. Cats pick up and reciprocate a lot of our energy, so if you remain calm and collected, your cat will stay relaxed as well.
How Do Cats Go To The Bathroom On A Plane
If you are taking a long flight, then it is more than likely that your cat will need to use the bathroom at some point during your travels. Bring a small, portable litter tray with you, and make sure it is small enough to be set on the ground in an airport bathroom.
Prepare your cat’s litter in small Ziplock bags, so they are easy to travel with. You will want to use the same litter your cat uses at home, so it will be a familiar smell they can recognize. Then take your kitties to the bathroom, pour some litter into the portable tray, and let them out of their carrier. They will most likely understand what to do and will jump into the tray to do their business.
Worst comes to worst; if your cat will not use your portable litter, they may go to the bathroom in their carrier. Be prepared and back cleaning supplies and plastic bags to dispose of everything. There are even pee pads that fit inside carriers that you can put in there in advance. These will be more absorbent and will help to reduce the mess.
Things To Consider
Familiarizing your cat with travel processes before you travel is a great way to ensure the entire process will go smoothly. Get them used to their carrier, leave it out and let them lay in it to get comfortable. If you are getting a new litter pan to bring with you, let them use it in your home for a couple weeks to get used to it.
Take them out in public, so they become familiar with the sounds of other people and things. Not only will they become more comfortable with their surroundings, but also you will get more comfortable with how to handle them in public. Especially if you are planning to travel with two cats, some practice beforehand will be essential.