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Open Roads Forum  >  RV Pet Stop  >  Cats

 > RV'ing with a cat

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happy2rv

Huntsville, AL, USA

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Posted: 12/04/19 06:39pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Our first cat loved traveling in the motorhome. That's one of the reasons we like RVs, we can take our pet with us instead of leaving them at home or at a kennel. In the motorhome, we put the litter box in the shower and moved it out when we needed the shower. Not ideal, but it worked. We didn't keep a carrier or anything, just let her run around the RV like she owned it.

Our current cat doesn't much care for traveling. With the trailer, we do keep him in a large carrier in the back seat of the truck while on the road. We have a pass through cat door into the outside compartment for his litter box. Once we get the trailer set up, we just let him loose in the trailer. He's usually OK with being in the trailer and doesn't try to get out. In fact, when we went to get him to put him in the carrier for our trip home from Thanksgiving, he really wanted to stay in the trailer rather than get in the carrier to go home.

We ordered a large carrier for the truck, its probably 3' x 4'. Maybe too big?


2018 Forrest River Salem Hemisphere 282RK - 2017 RAM 1500 TV

Previous RVs and TOADS
2004 Fleetwood Bounder 32W on WH W20
2000 Four Winds 5000 21RB
1986 27' Allegro
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2005 Ford Ranger XLT 2WD
2004 Suzuki Aerio
1988 Chevrolet Sprint

Dick_B

Palos Heights, IL USA

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Posted: 12/05/19 06:28am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

How does a cat learn/know that coyote scat means possible trouble?


Dick_B
2003 SunnyBrook 27FKS
2011 3/4 T Chevrolet Suburban
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way2roll

Wilmington NC

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Posted: 12/05/19 07:26am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

toedtoes wrote:

I just started taking The Cat camping this summer. The Cat in Training is about to make his first trip.

Here are my procedures:

1. Determine how your cat prefers to travel in the car. Some are happier in a carrier and not seeing out. Others prefer to be able to see and move around. Both mine are the latter.

2. If my cats leave the house, they have their harnesses on. They are either in a carrier OR on a leash when outside. I WILL NOT leave my cats behind if something happens, so I do everything I can to prevent anything happening.

3. I have engraved ID Tags on each harness. The tag includes the cat's name, my cell phone number, and the plate number for both the trailer and tow vehicle. This allows someone to find me at the campground even if there is no cell service.

4. I always keep a copy of my pets rabies certs in the trailer and in the vehicle. Whether my pet bites or scratches, or gets bit or scratched, that paperwork can save a lot of trouble and expense.

5. During the drive, I don't put water and food out. Whenever we stop, I immediately put out food and water for them. I keep the catbox in the trailer as my cats will wait until we stop driving to potty.

6. I have dry food available all the time at camp and home. Twice a day, they get canned food. This gets them to respond to the sound of the can opening. I also routinely call them to me by name and they will respond. This provides a better chance of getting them back if they out loose.

There are different types of harnesses out there. I had tried one of the wider padded harnesses on The Cat first and it was awkward for him. It kept getting pushed up into his head. The nylon thin H harnesses work really well. Make sure to get one with individually adjustable neck and body straps. For leashes, I find the 4ft ones that come with the harnesses to be a bit short. So I got the 5ft ones from Yellow Dog Design. They are a great length for us.

At the campsite, I use a 15ft braided nylon tether. I attach one end to the harness and the other to an eywbolt in the trailer. This allows The Cat to come in and out of the trailer while I sit under the awning. He really likes that "freedom". TCIT will have his own tether. Under no circumstances will I let them outside without me right there or without the tether or leash.

You can get more info here or here.


Thank you for the detailed information. Very Helpful! IS there a particular brand/model harness you like?

2oldman

Ca

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Posted: 12/05/19 07:28am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Dick_B wrote:

How does a cat learn/know that coyote scat means possible trouble?
I'll ask her.

NRALIFR

Truck Camping Out West

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Posted: 12/05/19 07:59am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

These three girls travel with us everywhere. The oldest one in the window seat has been with us long enough that her personal US map would be completely filled, if she had one. The two younger ones have been to the East and West coasts, and much of what’s in between. They are all “insiders” both at home and on the road.

[image]

We keep a litter box in the truck, and one in the camper, and they all share. When traveling, the boxes are filled with a 50/50 mix of clay and silica crystal litter, which will last at least a week as long as Mr. Lump Scooper does his job daily. The Boss pretty much makes sure he does, because she’s also affectionately known as The Nose, and if there was a “fragrance” problem, she would detect it before normal noses could detect it, and it would get fixed.

The oldest cat used to hike trails on a leash with us, but she’s too old for that now. The other two are still getting the hang of it. They are all good travelers, though and they make the trips more enjoyable for us.

[emoticon][emoticon]

* This post was edited 12/05/19 04:49pm by NRALIFR *


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Eric&Lisa

Scappoose, OR

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Posted: 12/05/19 11:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Our newest family member is coming up on four months old and is 'in training' on many levels. We have made it a point to take him with us as much as possible when we leave home to run errands. As a result, he is very comfortable riding in vehicles. Usually curls up on the center console and goes to sleep. Harness on, and leash locked in to seat belt just in case - although he has never tried to make a break for it. He has never seen the inside of a cage.

We *always* carry him in/out of the vehicle. He is never allowed to 'jump down' when we get home or anything like that. We want him programmed that the only way in/out is being held. Same thing applies to the camper. Going through the door himself isn't in the realm of possible options in his little mind.

We have had one camping night so far. He took it in stride. Litter box in the shower, food under the table, and he couldn't have cared less. Typical feline attitude - "No problem, I can run this camper just like I run the house". The camper will be coming with us for family Christmas so we have our own quarters, and that will be his second camping trip.

Our previous companion (RIP) was much the same way. He loved home, and tolerated travel / camping. We have to drive through some trees to get to our house and he always identified that as 'homecoming' and would get excited to go back to his house. It created a number of comical false alarms when there were trees coming in to a campground, LOL! He would 'talk' a bit about leaving home, but eventually learned the lesson of futility and got quiet after the first five miles or so.

I think the trick is to get them used to riding in vehicles at an early age. And not just to go to the vet either. Car trips should just be another day for them, and not anything unusual. We didn't start the previous one at an early age and the first car trips were the under-the-seat howling panic, whereas the current one has been in a vehicle at least a dozen times in his first few months.

All in, we very much enjoyed camping with our previous companion. After we lost him in February 2017, I think we only went camping twice over the following two summer seasons. The camper was really sad without him. With the new kid, I am looking forward to going camping more often this coming year.

-Eric


Eric & Lisa - Oregon
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2oldman

Ca

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Posted: 12/05/19 01:55pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

NRALIFR wrote:

They are all good travelers, though and they make the trips more enjoyable for us.
Nice to see your family again. [emoticon]

NRALIFR

Truck Camping Out West

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Posted: 12/05/19 03:45pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks [emoticon]

The girls all say Meowdy to Zia! [emoticon]

[emoticon][emoticon]

toedtoes

California

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Posted: 12/05/19 03:54pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

way2roll wrote:



Thank you for the detailed information. Very Helpful! IS there a particular brand/model harness you like?


Basic harness - this is the type of harness I've been using. It's a great starting harness as it will fit from an 8 week old kitten all the way to a large full grown cat. It's the easiest to put on as it has clasps on both the cek and the torso loop.

I did just recently get this type harness. The Cat has worn his and it works well. You do have to push it over the cat's head, so that might not work for all cats. TCIT has one of these also, but it is still a bit too big around the torso so he can pull out of it (he's 14 weeks now). I expect he'll fit in it in the next one or two months. It does seem a bit more secure with the two lengthwise straps.

I got the yellow dog extra small 3/8" by 60" leashes. They are the perfect size and length for cats. They can move around a bit more without my having to bend over while we walk.


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Naio

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Posted: 12/06/19 11:28am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've traveled with one indoor/outdoor cat for several years and this year I have added two more!

I was concerned too, before I traveled with cats, and I did some reading online. The best tip I ever read was: Traveling with a cat will change what campsites you choose. Cats need a place that has some cover. They need bushes or tall grass or something that they can hide in. A park-like campground with low grass or dirt and limbed up trees is terrifying to cats. They have nothing to hide in.

Harnesses are scary for cats, for the same reason. They feel they could not easily run away and up a tree if a dog came along. My one cat tolerates the harness only because he loves me. But he reminds me that it is much less safe for him than being free. I haven't tried it on the other cats. I only use a harness if we are at a campground that requires it, and we haven't been in one this year.

Each cat is different, and you will have to learn how camping works with your cats.

I have one cat who is very brave and attacked a Great Dane puppy. He wanted to attack other dogs, but I think I have talked him out of the advisability of that.

I kept him in the first few nights at our Barnyard location, just letting him out during the day, but he really wanted to be out and eventually I let him stay out at night. This was more about my trust in other humans than in him. I worried about whether they would be careful, driving at night.

Another cat, who was a 100% outdoor cat at my S&B, once I brought her in the van this year she refused to leave for the first 7 days. Then when she finally did leave, I thought she'd just found a new hiding place in the van and didn't realize she was outside. (I feel bad about this, but she had been so adamant about staying in that I didn't think otherwise.)

She spent the night outside, and didn't come find me until 3 in the afternoon the next day. I'm not sure how her night went, but she was really happy when I saw her in the afternoon and she has now decided that she has a 100% outdoor cat again. She doesn't even want to come in the van to eat, so I have started feeding her outside.

My old man cat, in the one I have traveled with for several years,loves boondocking. He loves to hunt the wild rodents all night. But now, camped in a farm-type atmosphere, he has followed his S&B pattern of being out during the day and sleeping in the van with me at night.

When we boondock, he stays out till 2 in the morning, but he comes by the van every half hour to let me know he's ok and having a fantastic time. He knows I worry :-). He also hops in the van if something spooks him.

I love my cats enormously, and some people might think that I am endangering them by letting them go out. But it's so wonderful to see them happy, and they love to be outside.


3/4 timing in a DIY van conversion. Backroads, mountains, boondocking, sometimes big cities for a change of pace.


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