How to choose the perfect cat carrier ?

- Categories : Tips and tricks
For holidays, leisure or a trip you have to leave and want to take kitty in your suitcases ? Forget the traditional "basket" for cat, even if its retro design can be attractive : it fails to close properly and is not easy to clean. The item you need is a transport bag or crate suitable for your travel project and your cat. Follow our tips to choose the right model !

Crate or carrying bag: what are the differences ?

To transport kitty, a first choice is necessary : rather the crate or the bag ? Answer : depends on your tastes, your budget, your storage possibilities, but also your mode of transport. The crate will be on average a little more expensive and more bulky, but has the advantages of being more stable and better protect your cat against shocks and vibrations. Instead the bag offers the advantage of being more manageable. It also comes in more sizes and offers more varied patterns, or colours. A second option that will favour cat owners who pay attention to their style ;)

Whatever type of cat carrier you choose, make sure it is the right size. Kitty must indeed be able to stand, turn around and lie comfortably. And if he is still young and likely to grow, do not hesitate to choose a model a little bigger. Another criterion of choice is to favour a model with an opening on the side rather than on the top, since cats may feel more exposed to danger in the second case. If you have an easily frightened feline, a "closed" model (without visible openings) can even be more reassuring.
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Travel by plane or car: special constraints

If you are planning to fly with your cat, you will need to comply with the air regulations that apply to selecting the kitty "basket". In case your pet travels in the cargo compartment it is compulsory to use an IATA-compliant pet crate with specific rules for size, material or attachments). If you take him with you in the cabin, you should know that companies usually require a small carrying bag that can be placed under the seat in front of you.

There are no special rules for car travel. Nevertheless, prefer a crate rather than a bag for the comfort and safety of your cat. Ideally, it should be able to fit in the space between the front seats and the rear seat. If nevertheless you want to place the bag or the crate on one of the seats of the car, make sure that they have a system to attach them with a seat belt. Be aware that there are also "car seats" for cat: in fact bags with a format and a fastening system specifically adapted for this type of transport.
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By bus, train or bicycle: choose the right "bag" to transport your cat 

If you are used to travel by bus or train and / or do a lot of walking, then it is better to opt for a carrying bag rather than a crate. There are an infinite number of sizes and models : handbag with handles, shoulder strap, backpack... Choose the one that best suits your use, making sure that it is not too small and has a sufficient ventilation system. If you do not want to carry Kitty (you might have a Maine Coon ...), you can also get a trolley-type cat bag or suitcase with a telescopic handle and wheels.

But you may be looking for something even more stable and original ? Another possibility of transport is offered to you : the stroller for cat (yes, it exists !). Finally, if you are a cycling enthusiast, be aware that it is no longer necessary to find means of fortune to attach the crate or carrying bag to your luggage rack. There are now specially designed bags for this transportation method.
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Have you found the perfect carrying bag or crate for kitty ? To avoid the drama on the day of departure, consider familiarising him in advance with this new object by leaving it several weeks in advance in a room where he usually goes. Then, on the day of the trip, think of covering the bottom of the bag or the crate with an absorbent fabric and plan a spare one. For more tips, visit our article "How to travel stress free with your cat ? ".

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