As most cat parents will tell you: Cats go where they want, when they want. We can ask, but most cats can’t be trained to follow commands like dogs. However, there are some things we can make easier for cats to do what we want, and one of them is getting your cat into a carrier for car trips. Here are some tips for how to familiarize your cat with his or her carrier, which will make the process easier!

Choose The Right Size And Look For Windows

Cats come in all sizes, so you’ll want to be sure you’re not expecting him or her to enjoy a carrier that is too small. On the other hand, you don’t want one that will be too large even after your cat is fully grown. Henkelion makes a TSA-approved carrier in two sizes that work well for cats. It’s durable, and has mesh sides so your cat can enjoy the view from one of its five windows.


Cats love to hide, especially in places where they can watch the action. Instead of pulling out the carrier only when a car trip is imminent, consider the carrier an alternative bed. Place it in a somewhat hidden spot in your house like near the front door, underneath a coffee table, or in any spot that has a view of a hallway or your bedroom. Cats can consider themselves hidden even when they’re in plain sight!

Line The Carrier With Throw Blankets

Most cats can’t resist kneading their paws into a fleece throw blanket. These are lightweight and available starting at $3 from Target. If you use the blanket on your bed for a few days, odds are your cat will have already discovered its joys. If not, he will still be able to smell you on it, and that will give him comfort while he’s in the carrier.


What’s your cat’s favorite treat? That’s a great bribe. Place a few in the carrier once it’s stocked with a blanket and in its normal spot. Do not talk to your cat when she first inspects the carrier. She might catch on that this is a trick to get them to go on car rides! Most importantly, do not close the carrier completely until your cat is completely familiar with her carrier.

If you’ve taken these steps and your cat still refuses to go into his or her carrier, consider skipping the car for vet visits and call PetWow to arrange At Home Veterinary Care. Our state-of-the-art mobile treatment center can handle any procedure (except surgery), and includes a full pet pharmacy. At prices comparable to an office visit, this is a great solution for Northern Kentucky pet parents, and those living inside the 275-loop in Cincinnati. Call us at 513-738-9691 or email [email protected] to schedule your appointment today. For more pet care tips, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest or LinkedIn!

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