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Old 08-11-2014, 04:34 PM   #1
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Camping With A Cat

I'd like to get our cat (?) to be able to go camping with us - particularly on longer stays. He is (in effect) a child and even sleeps with/between us at night, sometimes under the covers. I know he would have to travel in a carrier, and he is an "indoor boy" - so staying inside when set up wouldn't offend him. Do any of you that have a cat take yours? How do you deal with the litter pan issue? How would it be done in a small TT like our T-1350 as far as controlling odors and such? It could be kept under the dinette, I suppose - as long as we don't step in it. <G> Maybe left outside under the TT when not needed? The bathroom would be a possibility, but ours is used as a closet and for storage. Our Buster will not use anything except a litter pan. Won't go outside, and never has had an accident. He's very strict about that.

What say ye?
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Old 08-11-2014, 06:10 PM   #2
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At the 2014 Great Lakes M&G 2 families had cats with them. Wouldn't have known it if they hadn't told us. Try contacting user names J&A Lima Oh or vanhakke.
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Old 08-11-2014, 09:29 PM   #3
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My Mittzi would be very offended if we went w/o her! She is an indoor cat also but does go outside on a leash. I use only Scoop Away litter and never have an odor at all. We do scoop two or three times a day,though,when camping. She,too,won't use the great outdoors and cries to come inside for the box usage. Try using a covered litter box under your dinette--can't step into that kind! But cats are funny critters when it comes to change,so I would advise getting him used to the new kind at home. Also,introduce him to camper life at home before you take him on an extended stay.
Another possibility would be to remove your bathroom door and hang a curtain to hide your "closet"..the box would be hidden there just great on the floor. Hope this helps--we do get attached to our fur-kids, don't we!
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Old 08-11-2014, 10:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
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My Mittzi would be very offended if we went w/o her! She is an indoor cat also but does go outside on a leash.
We have a harness and leash for Buster, too. The harness itself is kind of a psychological restraint. Doesn't think he can jump fences or climb with it on. Still, I don't rely on that. He rarely goes outside any more, but when I take him out, I have him on the leash - and watch the harness closely for signs of slippage.

Quote:
I use only Scoop Away litter and never have an odor at all. We do scoop two or three times a day,though,when camping.
Is that a "clumping" kind? I'll have to look into it, just in case we give him a shot at it.

Quote:
She,too,won't use the great outdoors and cries to come inside for the box usage.
Buster's the same way. One time he slipped into the bathroom at home (unnoticed) when Shelley and I went to work. He was closed up in there for 5 hours! We heard this "EEEEE!" sound coming from the bathroom when we got home for lunch. When we opened the door, he made a panic run for the box. Never made a mess in the bathroom, but we would never hold it against him if he did under those conditions. Poor thing! <G>

Quote:
Try using a covered litter box under your dinette--can't step into that kind!
Actually, the one he uses is about 6" high - the two-piece open kind. It really wouldn't be a concern if it was all the way up under the dinette. He'd still be able to use it while the bed was made up, too.

Quote:
But cats are funny critters when it comes to change,so I would advise getting him used to the new kind at home. Also,introduce him to camper life at home before you take him on an extended stay.
I do take him out in the Sunny, but need to a lot more often. Having him hang out in there with me when it's at home (with our scent in it) will get him used to it, I'm sure. We have the 1350 in RV storage quite a bit. And you're right. They do NOT like change.

Quote:
Another possibility would be to remove your bathroom door and hang a curtain to hide your "closet"..the box would be hidden there just great on the floor. Hope this helps--we do get attached to our fur-kids, don't we!
Not sure that removing the door would be an option, but it's worth keeping in mind. Yes they are family, Janalee. We have internet cameras all around the house, inside and out, and have a neighbor checking on him when necessary, but it isn't the same - for him or us. Thanks for your suggestions. I appreciate it!

-Dale
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Old 08-12-2014, 05:43 AM   #5
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Hello'
Our Jasmine is a camper cat, when we go she goes, she has a perch in the front side window of the 2150 we have and the litter box goes in the bathtub, with a plastic drop cloth folded under it, if wife wants to shower, she sets it out, and jasmine seen happy with the arrangement. We likewise use clumping litter and scoop it at least daily, also have an Air-Wick aerosol air freshener in the bath. Jasmine rarely goes out, but we have a leash she is on if wife decides to take her out when we are sitting around in the evening. We travel with her in a carrier in the back seat of the F-150 crew cab, the carrier is strapped in with a seat belt. We are planning to go from Lima, Oh., to Marietta Ga next month, any time we stop she will wait for us in the camper with the exhaust fans running to keep her cool, and she may ride part of the tome on wife's lap, just not sure yet. I am not sure how the litter box situation would work in a 1350, but if you try I am sure it can work. The litter box does not have to be on the floor, cats can jump up to places to get to it.
Here is to hoping you will give it a try.
Jack

P.S. I just remembered something else, our camper is older 1983 model so I cut a hole in the bathroom door and put a cloth flap in it so Jasmine can get in and out of the bath when the door is shut, keeps the door out of the way instead of open all of the time.

I hope this helps.
Jack
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Old 08-12-2014, 06:42 AM   #6
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I just took one look at our cat and found my answer.. No way.
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Old 08-12-2014, 07:17 AM   #7
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Hi Jack and Angela.
Haven't seen you on for a while
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Old 08-12-2014, 07:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J&A Lima Oh View Post
I am not sure how the litter box situation would work in a 1350, but if you try I am sure it can work. The litter box does not have to be on the floor, cats can jump up to places to get to it.
That is the challenging part (being so small) and the litter box is probably the biggest concern. There isn't any place up off of the floor to put it in ours, so it would have to be on the floor. No tub in this one either.

Quote:
Here is to hoping you will give it a try.
I will be working towards it.

Quote:
P.S. I just remembered something else, our camper is older 1983 model so I cut a hole in the bathroom door and put a cloth flap in it so Jasmine can get in and out of the bath when the door is shut, keeps the door out of the way instead of open all of the time.
That's a good idea. Ours is an '88. If we can clear the floor of the bathroom of "stuff", it will be something to consider.

Quote:
I hope this helps.
Jack
It does. Thanks for your input, Jack.
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Old 08-13-2014, 08:14 AM   #9
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Three of us help a man search for his cat for 3 days after it got out he never did find it.
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Old 08-13-2014, 11:00 AM   #10
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Quote:
Three of us help a man search for his cat for 3 days after it got out he never did find it.
Pet loss happens a lot - in many ways and for many reasons.
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Old 08-13-2014, 01:34 PM   #11
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Pet loss happens a lot - in many ways and for many reasons.

I think you can say the same for people.......
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Old 08-13-2014, 04:16 PM   #12
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LOL! Lynn.
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Old 08-14-2014, 04:33 AM   #13
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^ LOL as well!
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Old 08-14-2014, 09:20 AM   #14
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I only seem to get here now and then, seems work and all interfere with the pleasure, Hope in a year or two to make that problem go away.
Later
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Old 08-20-2014, 05:45 AM   #15
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I just thought of something. We use 8" Coleman air mattresses to sleep on, and he sleeps with us. Got me wondering about claws and possible deflation if/when he "makes biscuits". What to do about that?
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Old 08-21-2014, 08:05 PM   #16
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Traveling with TWO cats

Dale and Shelley:

Sorry for the delay in answering: we've been out of town for a couple of weeks with no internet.

Camping with cats: I guess we MIGHT be experts on the subject, but there are still a lot of uncertainties. Probably because one can never tell just what's on a cat's mind, eh ?

We traveled extensively with Nessie, the high-mileage cat. She probably had about 40,000 miles on her. She was older (8 or 9) when we started traveling with her, and she was very content to just lay in her bed on the console, or on the chair in the trailer. She was very much a home body, and would nose around outside and come back in with no trouble what-so-ever. We always kept a close eye out for other animals (dogs), though.

Our current two cats, a neutered male and female, are different. The male is an adopted stray, has taken to indoor life fairly well, but would probably revert to his feral self if we let him. Keeping him happy while traveling down the road, and while cooped up in the trailer for weeks at a time has been a challenge. The lack of physical activity is the main problem, and we are afraid to try a harness, and let him out, because we are afraid that he'll like it too much and leave.

The female has always been an indoor cat, but is somewhat high strung. She wants to run around the house a lot, and in a 30' trailer, that presents a problem. Every so often, the two will start to run around the trailer, causing "cat quakes".

As of this writing, we don't intend to let them outside. We may try to use a harness and leash at some point. If we do, we'll let you know how it turns out.

As for the litter pan, we do like someone else suggested, and line the shower stall with heavy plastic and place the pan in there. When shower-time for people comes, we move the litter pan to the kitchen, then immediately replace it when we are done. Both cats are pretty OK with that arrangement, and they do share the litter pan together.

Obviously, cleaning the pan very frequently is the only way to keep the odor down, especially when the shower stall is right next to the bedroom ! Our litter of choice is Fresh Step, and both cats seem to like it a lot.

Both of our cats take great interest in the out-of-doors, and are frequently planted at the door looking out. They show interest in going out when the door opens, but we quickly discourage them by shooing them away. They now know the drill, and usually back away when the door opens, then come right back to it when it closes.

As said earlier, we wish we could let them out for exercise, but are afraid what the outcome of that would be. They just came back from their 4th trip. This trip, they were a little bit more mellow. They are adapting. The part that they hate the most is the being transferred from truck to trailer and back again. Once in the trailer, they are fairly content.

I'm not sure if this answers some of the questions that you had ? Travelling with cats can be dicey, because cats can be dicey. As we know, we get to know the cats' personalities, and try our best to accommodate them. And, they usually come to accommodate us (if we're lucky).

Hope this helps.

Dennis

P.S.: Hi, Jack and Jim
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Old 08-21-2014, 10:13 PM   #17
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Thanks for your comments, Dennis. Our Buster pretty well has his habits down after 5 years. Seems like he would be accepting of some outings. It is a small TT and he's a big boy (not overweight) at about 23" without the tail. He pretty much just "hangs out", but we do play with paper balls, wrestle around, and play other cat games - when he wants to. I hadn't thought of the size of our Sunny being an issue with activity. Good point.

Thanks again for your comments. Good food for thought there.

-Dale
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Old 01-30-2015, 03:46 PM   #18
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Well our trip to Marietta Ga with the cat went very well, after we were on thr road we opened the door and let Jasmine have the run of the back seat, and sometimes she would come up and sit on my wife's lap for a while then she would go back on the seat or floor and take her long naps, every time we would stop we put her in the camper with the litter box and she had no accidents going or coming home, although I think she was glad to be home.
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Old 01-31-2015, 06:19 AM   #19
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Cats On The Road

Jack and Angela,

That's a good report on Jasmine. Sounds like she adapted pretty well. She (like yourselves) like the Georgia weather a lot, we're betting. Seems to us that Jasmine will accommodate better and better as time goes on.

Not much change with our cats. They have pretty much settled in on this 3-month trip to Florida. We tried to put a harness and leash on Arty a couple weeks ago. It didn't fit very well, and once we was outside, he got out of it. He hunkered down under the trailer for 3 or 4 minutes, then went back inside all by himself. Looks like he won't be running away. I guess that's the end of that story ! But they still love sitting at the door and looking out.

Looks like we'll be starting our slow trip back north on Sunday.
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Old 02-01-2015, 11:26 AM   #20
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Our kitties (Fitz and Lizzie) went camping at 3 mo. of age; they are now 2 yrs. old. They travel in the back seat of our truck, in a large, fabric carrier, harnesses on, leashes attached. I heard too many horror stories of lost cats due to auto accidents. They snooze or look out the window and are quiet for hours on the road. We stop every 2-3 hours anyway for stretch breaks, gasoline, etc. Having the leashes attached is a backup when we move them to the TT for potty breaks.
They spend trailer time at the doors or windows.




When we are outside, they are in their "kitty condo." It's a large fabric crate that folds up for storage. It has a screened "porch."




We keep the litter box in the shower stall also. Since our bathroom is amidships, we put a kitty door in so we can keep the bathroom door closed. (water dish and cat toys included in pic at no charge)


They are very creative in their use of space in the trailer. Lizzie likes the seclusion of the under-sofa storage drawer.


or atop the valence.


We put leashes on them and walk them several times a day, trying to avoid the dog walkers. At home they are strictly indoor cats since we live in the city on a busy street, so camping means going outside for them.



In summary, the kitties have adapted well to camping and love to go. When we start to gather food and camping supplies in our staging area, Fitz goes into the travel crate and waits. When their harnesses go on, they go and find their leashes because they know it's time to get in the truck.
We love having them with us and they are no trouble to take.
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