Updated: May 26
Are you planning on taking your pets somewhere this summer? I have a few tips for camping with your pets and a cross-country road trip with your pets. Specifically, I have two cats with whom I have done all of the travel. These items and tips have saved me and made their rides way more comfortable. This post is mostly geared towards traveling with cats or smaller animals. Dogs tend to have a way easier time traveling because they are usually trying to get in and out of your car.
Camping With Pets
If you're planning on camping with your pets, you must keep them safe. Most tents zip down, which allows our furry friends to push their faces through and outside. You want to make sure that your pets have just as good of a time as you are.
I use these clips to hook the bottom of my tent together because there are zipper loops. This prevents my cats from being able to push their way out of the tent when we are all inside of it. The tent I have has three different zippers that all come together, so I just put a carabiner on them to prevent them from escaping.
I love having a smaller tent inside our tent at night because it makes me feel safer. I put their bed and their food, water, and litter inside that little tent. That tent zips from the top, so I know that they can't get out of it in the middle of the night. I also always leave their litter inside of that tent when we are camping to create less of a mess in the overall tent.
The travel food bowls I love have a tray that pops up, and the bowls pop down, so it is a lifted food tray for them, but it collapses completely flat. I also really love the yeti water bowl for dogs because it allows them to have a lot of water that they can't tip over.
Always bring a few toys to have something to occupy their time when you are keeping them inside of your tent.
5. Harness and leash
If you are traveling/camping with your pets, I highly recommend that they are harness and leash trained, no matter the type of pet. This allows them to get outside of the tent and will also be extremely safe. You don't want to lose your cat in the woods because that would be so sad. Having them trained to be on a leash allows you and them to explore your surroundings freely.
6. Sealed food container
It is imperative to have a sealed food container, especially when camping for their food. The reason for this is that if you have cats, you know they will try to break into any bag containing their food to go bad. But the main reason is so that insects and other small animals can't get into your pet's food and consume it.
Cross-Country / Road Trips with Pets
Have you ever wanted to take an extremely long road trip with your pet or needed to travel across the country with your pet? Recently I've moved across the country, and I had to take my cats in the car with me for a 30 Hour road trip. Sometimes you don't have the option but to try to make the best of the situation, so I have a few tips on how we made our road trip relatively seamless.
1. Litter Box
It may sound gross, but you can't expect your pet to hold her bladder the entire day until you get to your stop. I kept a litter box inside the car for them to use at any point in time. I also had travel litter boxes that I brought with me to the hotel. I brought these with a garbage bag to just be disposed of by me, and the hotel staff would not have to deal with that.
I am not sure if it was necessary to give them each a calming chew before the start of each day. However, I am glad that I did because they were extremely calm and well-behaved throughout the trip. I would rather be calm and happy than wish I had given them something to help with the nerves. My cat has never been in the car this long, so I wanted them to be as comfortable as possible.
3. Leash / Harness
Again, having a harness and leash train pet is so important because when you get out of the car, you can allow your pet to stretch their legs.
4. Pet Stroller
This may seem unnecessary, but it came in handy for getting the cat from the car to the hotel. My cats are extremely heavy, and you get nervous around other people, so they tend to want to run when they're on their way. I was able to pop the stroller open, put both cats in it, secure the stroller netting with a zipper, and push them into the hotel, which was way easier than carrying them in a carrier.
5. Collapsible food and water bowls
I always tried to make a habit when we stopped for food, and we made sure the cats had food. They are living creatures, and they should be treated the way you are feeling because they are probably feeling the same way.
6. Cat Nip
Catnip is probably unnecessary, but he didn't have a choice because I had a fresh catnip plant that I was bringing across the country with me. And when the cats were getting a little nervous, I would see them go and take a bite out of it and then calm back down.
They need to be comfortable, so I made sure that I had a waterproof cover over our seats in the back, and over that, I put their favorite blankets. They could cozy up or watch out the window whatever they wanted.
8. Travel Spray
I also used the travel spray and sprayed the entire car with spray. When they were kittens, I've used it before, and we traveled eight hours with them. It's more like an anxiety reducer for them, so I thought I would try it again for this road trip because it was longer.
Notice that I didn't put having a carrier in. While I did have a hard carrier for emergency use only, I did not keep them in it at any point of the trip. I only had it on hand if there was an accident or I needed them secure, and none of the other options would've been safe for them.
Let me know where you plan to go with your pets during the summer, and let me know if any of these tips or tricks help you.
Below is a picture of my cat moose!