How to Pack a Cat
Remember what happened to Jack the Cat? The poor guy escaped from his carrier (it fell and broke) at JFK International Airport and was lost for 61 days. The lesson we can glean from this unfortunate incident is that a secure, high-quality cat carrier is an absolute must.
Many airlines allow travelers to carry a pet on a plane as long the animal's carrier fits within set size limits. When flying, you'll want an airplane-approved cat carrier, and you'll also want to check with your airline for its rules and regulations regarding flying felines. (Pay attention to breed restrictions, too. American Airlines, for example, prohibits brachycephalic, or "snub-nosed," cat breeds like Persian cats, since they may have trouble breathing on planes.)
According to Catster, "The best cat carriers for airplane travel are durably sewn with lots of air vents; a zippered top and side exit door; a soft, removable bottom pad; and several flat internal and external pockets." A carrier with detachable dishes for food and water is also a good bet, especially for longer trips. Put something familiar, like a favorite toy or blanket, in the carrier to comfort your furry friend. And be sure to include a label with your name and address, a copy of your itinerary, and your pet's medical records in the carrier's pocket.
Does your cat tend to have accidents in its carrier? Puppy pads, such as these ones from Petco, make excellent disposable and absorbent carrier liners when cut to fit.