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15+ Year Member
Nov 4, 2000
sodom, south georgia
so this is just sort of a general question. my fiancee and i are going to be out of town for a couple of weeks of christmas break and we're trying to figure out the best way to accomidate her cat. basically we're trying to figure out:

A) if it would be better to leave the cat at home by itself w/people coming by to feed it or if it would be better of going on the trip with her. she'll be driving about 9 hours and the cat is not fond of car rides on the highway (though interestingly he seems to like rides at slower speeds)

B) if the cat goes with, would it be helpful to give a light sedative for the ride (i dunno what they use for cats; but we're not talking like knocking the kitty out, more along the lines of valium or something to chill him out)

the kitty is used to being around lots of people and other animals (two dogs - her roommates), all of whom would be gone (people and animals) over break if he is left alone.

it's probably worth noting that the cat does get lonely if left alone for even a couple days.

so what do you guys think?


10+ Year Member
Nov 18, 2005
you could give the cat some acepromazine - its a light sedative that is sometimes given to animals that get travel sickness - your vet could give you some in tablet form.

you may find though with a 9 hour car ride that after the first little while the cat settles and is fine for the remainder of the trip...


Senior Member
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Dec 7, 2004
I completely agree with the above. When I take my cats on car rides... they are usually a little nervous during the first hour or so, but quickly settle down.

The holidays can be stressful enough, so you could prob give a light dose of ace and then go from there.
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10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Feb 8, 2005
Veterinary Student
My cat and dog have recently been on some long car trips... From New Orleans to New Hampshire and then to Oregon. My cat meows a bit when we first get in the car but then settles down and is fine for the rest of the day, no sedative needed. She seems more comfortable if she has a good view of me or my husband and the dog.

If your fiancee is anything like me, she'll be able to relax and enjoy herself more if she knows her cat is safe and happy. If you take the cat, she can make sure of that herself, assuming the cat wouldn't be more upset by the car ride and being in a new place.

You could always just get some acepromazine just to have on hand in case she doesn't settle down.


10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Jun 9, 2005
Funny, the first time I asked my vet about using sedatives on my cat for a 7hr+ car ride, she looked at me like I was insane, and then explained my 5mo-old kitties were too young. But there was something about the way she looked at me that made me think that I was some kind of crazy for asking.

So I've taken my kitties on several long rides without drugs, and they meow some but mostly they sleep. I also have a fairly large carrier, so I can fit a shoebox of litter in there, food , water & toys and they still have room to stretch. I've learned that it helps A LOT if they can see me AND out a window. I think the random car noises/bumps are less scary for them that way.

I stopped feeling guilty when I realized MY movement was completely restricted to under my seatbelt, while they're travelling in a small hotel room! Of course, they have no idea what's going on...
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