Tips for Taking Your Cat Camping
Anyone who owns a cat knows how hard traveling with cats can be. Can you imagine how hard it would be to camp with your cat? Need some pro tips for taking your cat camping?
The good news is we have everything you’ll need to know about cat camping tips, so there’s hope. Many people are jumping on the camping with cats bandwagon and bringing their fur babies out on their adventures.
If you search #campingwithcats on Instagram, you’ll see the amazing lives of some really curious felines getting out there and exploring. It’ll inspire you to make this your own reality.
So what are you waiting for? Read these tips for camping with your cat and then head out to the meowtains with your furry friend!
How to Take Your Cat Camping
Camping with cats is becoming very popular, and trending on many social media platforms. Some companies have even made specialty cat tents for maximum feline comfort.
Making your cat into your newest camping companion will require a bit of preparation. Unlike dogs, you can’t just strap a leash on your cat and jump in the car.
You’ll have to be fully knowledgeable about safety, procedures, and health risks before you book your campsite. If you love your pet and consider it your child, like most of us do, you’ll want to make sure you keep them safe.
Follow these tips to make sure that both you and your cat enjoy your trip, and many more for years to come.
Figure Out if Your Cat Would be a Good Campurr
Before you do anything, make sure your cat is right for camping. This is vital to the safety, enjoyment, and happiness of both you and your cat.
Some cats just don’t have the personality or the desire to be out in the wilderness with you. Always make sure yours does before you plan your trip.
Consider the following questions when you determine if your cat should join you on your camping trip.
Is My Cat Good on a Harness and Leash?
This is extremely important because your cat is going to have to be on a lash and harness for a large portion of the time. In most parks, all pets are required to be on their leashes at all times.
Cats who do not like being leashed and always wiggle out of their collars will not be able to go camping. So will cats who do not enjoy being carried, picked up, or held.
If you don’t know the answer to this question, you should start leash training your cat now.
Has My Cat Been Outside Before?
If your cat is not an outdoor cat, it shouldn’t be camping until it has become used to being outside.
Cats who have a tendency to wander off or can’t stay in one spot won’t make good adventure cats. They run the risk of wandering off and either getting lost, going missing, or getting mixed up with some trouble.
If you’ve gone through all the questions and you still aren’t sure if your cat will be right for your camping trip, this personality test will help you figure it out.
Determine What Type of Camping Trip You’ll Take With Your Cat
If you’re going backpacking in the mountains for a few weeks, forget about taking your cat with you. Just because you’ve seen Homeward Bound doesn’t mean your cat will be able to handle such a long, intense journey.
Stick to smaller trips in national parks or private campground type areas. These areas will allow you to keep a more watchful eye on your cat so they don’t run off or wander.
Your cat also won’t become overwhelmed or exhausted when you stick to shorter trips. It can be a lot of stress and energy for a cat to do a lot of rigorous things at a time.
Check your destination. Some campgrounds or parks allow pets, but some don’t. Some parks only allow pets in certain areas, and most won’t allow them in the backcountry.
You’ll also need to keep your cat on a leash at your campsite in most places, as these laws apply to all pets- not just cats.
Check the Weather.
Under no circumstances should you ever take your cat camping during extreme weather conditions or temperatures. Animals do not have the same composition or tolerance for heat as humans do, and this can have serious health consequences for your furry companion.
If it’s going to be sunny, certain cats require sun protection. This mostly refers to cats with light, fine fur or no fur at all.
Certain areas of their body, particularly the areas with the least fur such as the nose or the mouth, are vulnerable to sun damage. But don’t be sharing your sunscreen with your pet. Many of the chemicals in human sunscreen are toxic to cats, so you’ll have to talk to your vet about sun care options that are safe for them.
Vetbasix is one brand of pet-friendly sunscreen that might work for your cat. Ask your vet about it before you leave.
Don’t hike or have your pets out in the sun during peak hours, especially between 11:00am and 3:00pm. Try to pick shady spots where your cat can cool down and be comfortable.
Make Sure You Pack Properly
Keep in mind that you can’t exactly pack light when you’re traveling with a cat.
You’ll have to bring all of the food that your cat eats regularly at home. This will avoid stomach and digestion problems that could seriously put a damper on the trip, not to mention making your cat very uncomfortable.
Make sure you pack enough food for every day that you’ll be out. Don’t forget to bring along some treats to reward your cat as you go. More importantly, don’t forget to put your cat’s food away at night with your own so critters or bears can’t get to it.
You also need to bring plenty of water. They need purified, clean drinking water as much as you do. So if you won’t drink from the river, don’t make them either. Pack some extra water purifying tablets or a purification device if you don’t want to carry too much water.
Safety is also important. Make sure you have a first aid kit handy in case of an accident for both you or your fur child.
It’s also a good idea to have lights on your cat’s harness, collar or leash. While cats have no issue seeing in the dark, humans are another story. Make sure you can see your cat at all times to keep them safe and protected.
Some cats are pretty picky about where they use the washroom, so you might also have to bring a small litter box with you that will fit in your tent. If it’s a long car ride to get to your campsite, keep one in the vehicle as well.
It helps to pack a toy or two, or a blanket, that you know your cat loves. This will help them be more comfortable in a new and different setting.
Final advice for all Cat Lovers Who Camp
Remember, you can’t force your cat to become an adventure cat if they really don’t want to. And they’ll let you know if they don’t want to.
It’s also much easier to train a kitten to be a good campurr than it is to train an adult cat who has already become accustomed to a certain lifestyle. Cats are very prone to their routine and generally don’t enjoy it when changes are made.
To help get your cat used to being outside, start taking them on regular outings leading up to your camping trip. This will get them accustomed to all of the sights, sounds, and smells that the outdoors has for them to experience.
Follow all of the rules that would apply to camping with a dog. Clean up after your cat if they use the washroom outside and don’t leave trash behind.
Most importantly, always make sure your cat is up to date on their flea, tick, and heartworm vaccinations. They should also be microchipped and wearing identification on their collar.
One last tip: NEVER leave your cat alone! Always keep your eye on them and keep them safe, just like you would your own child.
Take Your Cat to a Campground Near You with Book Your Site
Choose from thousands of campgrounds throughout North America for your next outdoor adventure. Book Your Site has options for any camping style, whether you’re in an RV or you’re tent camping.
Find the right site for you when you download the app or browse on your desktop. Your journey is waiting for you.