Car And Motion Sickness In Cats: How To Prevent And Treat It

Motion sickness, or car sickness, is common for cats of all breeds and ages. Car sickness in cats is a problem which pet parents from all over the world face.

Similar to the motion sickness human beings sometimes get, cats can also suffer from it, especially if they aren’t used to car rides. Felines usually perceive a ride in their owners’ cars as a stressful experience, which brings out unpleasant side effects such as vomiting, disorientation, anxiety, fear, and stress panting.

It’s a popular, yet mistaken myth that indoor cats are more prone to experiencing car sickness compared to felines which are allowed to freely roam the outside world. Motion sickness in cats can strike down any kitty. Moreover, even if your cat may have appeared to be fine during previous car journeys, it might still start suffering from motion sickness all of a sudden.

Car sickness can be triggered by anxiety, being in heat, health disorders, unpleasant associations with negative past experiences related to cars, and so forth. It can also be triggered by something as simple as an uncomfortable cat carrier. The most common reason is usually the stress caused by traveling in an enclosed space with unfamiliar surroundings.

Car And Motion Sickness Symptoms And Side Effects In Cats

When human beings get car sickness, we often turn pale or “green” and we feel nausea. Your kitty won’t change its color and it won’t tell you that its stomach is upset. Instead, it will show some of the following symptoms:

  • Restlessness
  • Stress panting
  • Excessive drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Meowing or hissing
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Lethargy

Remember that there’s always a chance that your kitten may hiss at some scent or object in your car simply because it doesn’t like it and not because it has motion sickness. And diarrhea or vomiting may be caused by an already existing heath related disorder.

What To Do When Your Cat Has Car Sickness: Prevention, Treatment And Cures

You can help prevent car sickness by preparing the kitty ahead of time. The most essential thing to do is to teach it that the carrier or cage isn’t something scary. Familiarize your kitty with its carrier several days before the trip. Allow it to sniff and explore the carrier, place treats, cat toys, or even some cat food in it. Make sure the cat is comfortable with the carrier before using it.

You can also familiarize the cat with your car by allowing it to roam and freely explore the inside of the vehicle before you travel. Spraying some catnip or scattering treats is an easy way to help kitty feel comfortable quickly.

The ultimate solution to preventing car sickness in cats is sedating them. However, if your kitty is suffering from some form of health disorder, the sedative may trigger some nasty side effects. As such, your safest bet is to consult with your vet before sedating your fluffy pal.

Another option is to give your kitty a mild relaxant, such as an anxiety remedy. There are countless anxiety remedies for felines on the market, so make sure you’ve read the ingredients carefully and always stick to all-natural products.

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One Of The Best Motion Sickness Remedies For Cats: Ark Naturals’ Happy Traveler Capsules

Ark Naturals offers a great remedy against anxiety for feline furballs in the form of capsules. The herbal formula aids stressed and nervous kitties

The product is made of all-natural ingredients, including valerian, magnesium, and German chamomile. You add the capsules to the kitty’s food or water.

One capsule is enough for cats weighing up to 25 lbs, which are 12 weeks of age or older. The remedy works its magic on every feline breed and the 3-piece package offers a total of 90 capsules. It’s affordable and efficient when it comes to stressful occasions such as car rides, vet visits, scary bath time, meeting new house guests, and so on.

You can get this remedy without a special prescription from your vet. Its all-natural formula has no addictive effects on felines, making it ideal for usage on a frequent basis.

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Some feline breeds are shyer, jumpier, and more anxious than other breeds. Of course, each cat is unique. As such, even if your furball happens to have an easygoing, laid-back temper, it can still experience car sickness.

If you can avoid taking your feline pal for a car ride, just leave the kitty at home. However, if you do need to travel with your pet, try relieving the cat’s stress by helping it to associate the journey with a safe and positive experience. Familiarize it with the car and the carrier ahead of time, bring its favorite toys, don’t feed it right before taking off, don’t play loud music in the car, and if necessary – use an anxiety remedy to treat car sickness in cats.

Emily Parker

Emily Parker is the Content Manager at Catological. She's passionate about helping cat parents love their cats better by providing the best information and recommendations about everything you'll need to know about your cat, from kitten to senior years. She believes natural, biologically-appropriate products are best...why wouldn't you provide the best for a member of your family?!