Chris Kouwenhoven

The essential cat carrier

Your cat carrier is one of your most important pieces of cat care equipment. Don't take your cat away from home without it! It will provide you and your pet with precious moments of safety and security, making trips to the vet, to a vacation spot, or to a new residence like "bringing home with you". Before your cat can feel comfortable in the carrier, it is essential that he becomes familiar with it long before it is time to be rushed off to the vet. Place it near his play area and put a favorite toy or food treat in it. (The door can be propped open or even temporarily removed.) If you put his favorite blanket in it and locate it near one of his chosen napping spots, he may even curl up in it. Every time he has to be put in the carrier, be sure he is rewarded with a food treat immediately after being placed inside.

Get a cat carrier which provides the cat with a feeling of security as well as the ability to look out at the world. The recommended type is made of two pieces of high-impact plastic with vents along the top. Bolts hold the top and bottom together and should be checked periodically. The stainlesssteel grid door allows for ventilation and the opportunity for Kitty to see his favorite people.

Note: The following carriers are not recommended: those make entirely of wire (cats feel vulnerable when exposed on all sides) and those made of cardboard or wicker (crushable and too hard to clean).

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