Cat hates its carrier? Let’s make it easier

Cats like to travel… on their own terms. So a carrier crate is usually NOT something they find appealing – and they’ll make sure you know about it.

They’re not simply being awkward. More often, an extreme reaction is a result of fear and anxiety developed at an early age, as they like their usual habits and habitat and react poorly to being removed from these. They may also associate the carrier with stressful experiences.

However, there are things you can do to make it easier for them – and therefore for you. And they’re not wrestling tips.

Kate and the rest of our vet nurses recommend trying a step-by-step guide, next time you need to get your cat into its carrier.

Then if you’re still struggling, please don’t hesitate to ask our team for specific advice. You can call us on 0207 723 0453 to arrange a consultation.

Try our step-by-step guide

Plus, here are some top tips that might work for your cat…

  1. No sudden shocks – Get the carrier out in advance, so your cat can explore it in their own time and get used to it, while feeling happy and relaxed at home.
  2. Be prepared – Don’t feed your cat for at least an hour beforehand, to reduce the chance of sickness (as this will increase any negative feelings they have about the carrier).
  3. Comfortable scents – A cat’s sense of smell is around 14 times more sensitive than ours, so it’s important that their carrier doesn’t smell of cleaning products, or anything else they might find stressful. Clean it thoroughly with gentle products, then add towels and clothing which smell of you and your home.
  4. Use small treats – Put these in the carrier to create a positive association for your cat.
  5. Take care in transit – Manoeuvre your cat in backwards; cover the carrier with a blanket to avoid motion sickness; and don’t put the carrier on the ground if there are dogs nearby.

You could also talk to us about pheromone diffusers to improve your cat’s anxiety, as we’re always happy to help you find the best solution for your pet.

Ask our advice about cat anxiety