How to Travel with a Cat Litter Box?
If you have a cat, arranging to travel with them can be stressful. Cats usually don’t like disruptions to their routine, and taking care of all their travel needs as well as your own can be difficult. One of the most challenging aspects is traveling with a cat litter box, so let’s look at how to do it.
How to Travel with a Cat Litter Box on a Plane?
Even for a short flight, you should always plan on giving your cat a place to relieve themself when you fly. The stress of an unusual situation may make a cat want to relieve themself, and flights are often subject to unexpected delays and schedule changes. It’s important to bring a cat litter box with you when you travel by plane.
If you are taking your cat on a plane, it’s important to know the airline’s regulations first. Most airlines require you to keep your cat inside their carrier, and to keep the carrier beneath the seat in front of you. Most airlines will also have regulations about the type of carrier they permit.
You may also want to consider purchasing a seat for your cat, if the airline allows it, so that you can use a larger carrier and make your cat more comfortable.
To travel with a cat on a plane, choose a cat carrier that meets the airline regulations, and that is also small enough to fit beneath the seat in front of you.
Once you know the dimensions of your carrier, you can choose a portable cat litter box that will fit inside the carrier. The portable litter box should be small enough to fit inside the carrier, and small enough that your cat shouldn’t have to lay in the litter box.
How to Travel with a Cat Litter Box in a Car?
Depending on how much room you have in your car, you can choose to get a portable litter box or use a conventional litter box in the car. If your cat has a habit of spilling or tracking cat litter, it’s a good idea to slightly underfill the litter box for the car trip, or choose a travel cat litter box with a cover, to prevent cat litter from getting all over the inside of the car.
Bring along several small bags of cat litter, and a cat litter scoop. When the cat uses the litter box, you can empty a small bag of replacement litter into the box, and then use the empty bag to quickly scoop out the litter box and seal up the cat’s waste.
How to Train a Cat to Use a Portable Litter Box?
Before traveling with your cat, it’s a good idea to try to see if they will use absorbent pads rather than litter. These pads are very convenient during travel, because there is reduced risk of spilling or tipping, and they are more compact than a litter box. However, because there is no way for a cat to dig or bury with a pad, some cats will not be comfortable using one.
Training your cat to use a pad can take some time, and should be done well before your travel date. The best way to do it is:
Place a layer of pads on the bottom of your cat’s normal litter box, beneath their normal litter, so that the smells and experience are familiar to them.
Over the course of a few days or weeks, as you clean the litter box, gradually reduce the amount of litter in the box, until there are only pads in the box.
If your cat continues to use the litter box when there is no litter in it, only pads, they will probably easily use them during travel.
You would follow a similar process when training a cat to use a portable litter box, or any travel litter box.
Place the new travel litter box beside the cat’s existing litter box, with the same kind of litter. This gives the cat a chance to become familiar with the smells of the new litter box.
After a few days, remove their regular litter box and leave only the travel version. If they transition easily, then they are prepared to use it during travel.
If you don’t have time to make a gradual transition, you can try scooping some of your cat’s waste out of their existing litter box, removing the litter box, then placing their waste on the pad or in the new litter box. The familiar smell may help them understand how to use the new arrangement.
Giving your cat some time at home to get familiar with a new carrier and new litter box can help make the travel experience less stressful for them, and for you.