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Exploring India with Your Cat: A Guide to Safe and Stress-Free Travel

Sunil Dcosta

30 Mar 2023

Discover the Top Pet-Friendly Destinations in India and Enjoy an Unforgettable Adventure with Your Feline Companion!

Are you a cat owner looking to add some excitement to your travels? Well, as the famous quote goes, "Life is a journey, not a destination," and what better way to make that journey more exciting than to bring your feline friend along for the ride? Whether you're planning a road trip or a flight to a new destination, your cat can be the purr-fect adventure buddy.

As the American author Ernest Hemingway once said, "One cat just leads to another." So, if you're already a cat owner, why not keep the adventure going and bring them with you on your travels? After all, cats are known for their curiosity and independence, which can make for some unforgettable experiences.

So, pack your bags, grab your cat, and get ready for a journey filled with fun, love, and lots of purring!

When it comes to cat-friendly destinations in India, there are plenty of options to choose from.

Here are some of the top places to consider when traveling with your feline friend:

  1. Goa - With its scenic beaches and laid-back vibe, Goa is a great destination for cat travel. Many hotels and resorts in Goa are pet-friendly, and there are plenty of opportunities for relaxation and outdoor activities.

  2. Himachal Pradesh - Known for its stunning mountain scenery and picturesque hill stations, Himachal Pradesh is a popular destination for travelers with pets. The region has many pet-friendly accommodations and plenty of hiking trails to explore.

  3. Rajasthan - With its majestic forts, palaces, and colorful bazaars, Rajasthan is a fascinating destination for cat owners. Many hotels and guesthouses in Rajasthan welcome pets, and there are plenty of sights to explore, including the famous Amber Fort and the Pushkar Camel Fair.

  4. Kerala - Known as "God's Own Country," Kerala is a popular destination for travelers seeking relaxation and rejuvenation. Many hotels and resorts in Kerala are pet-friendly, and there are plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities, including boat rides and trekking.

  5. Uttarakhand - Home to the scenic hill stations of Mussoorie and Nainital, Uttarakhand is a great destination for cat owners who love the mountains. Many hotels and guesthouses in Uttarakhand welcome pets, and there are plenty of hiking trails and scenic viewpoints to explore.

These are just a few examples of the many cat-friendly destinations in India. With a little bit of research and planning, you can find the perfect destination for you and your furry friend.

Tips that may help you in finding cat-friendly destinations in India.

  1. Research pet-friendly accommodations: Look for hotels or accommodations that allow pets. Some hotels may have specific rooms or floors designated for guests with pets. You can also check online directories that list pet-friendly accommodations.

  2. Check with airlines: If you plan to fly with your cat, check with airlines' pet policies, fees, and restrictions. Some airlines allow pets in the cabin or cargo hold, while others may have specific requirements.

  3. Visit cat cafes: Many cities in India have cat cafes where you can enjoy a cup of coffee and spend time with cats. These cafes often have rules regarding cat behavior and hygiene, so make sure to check before you visit.

  4. Explore pet-friendly parks: There are many parks and gardens in India that allow pets. These can be great places to take your cat for a walk and let them explore new surroundings.

  5. Consult with a veterinarian: Before traveling with your cat, it's a good idea to consult with a veterinarian to ensure that your cat is healthy and up-to-date on all necessary vaccinations. The veterinarian may also provide advice on how to make the trip more comfortable for your cat.

If you're planning a car travel with your cat, there are some essential items that you should bring with you to ensure that your furry friend is comfortable and safe during the journey. Here are some of the things that you should consider packing:

  1. Cat carrier - This is the safest way to transport your cat in a car. Make sure that the carrier is sturdy and secure and that it's the appropriate size for your cat to comfortably sit, stand, and turn around in.

  2. Food and water - Bring enough food and water for your cat for the duration of the journey. You should also pack bowls or containers for serving food and water.

  3. Litter box and litter - Bring a small litter box and litter to ensure that your cat has access to a bathroom during rest stops. You may also want to pack some plastic bags to dispose of waste.

  4. Blanket or towel - Pack a soft blanket or towel to provide comfort and to catch any spills or accidents.

  5. Medications and first aid kit - If your cat is on any medications, make sure to bring them along. You may also want to pack a basic first aid kit that includes items like gauze, bandages, and antiseptic.

  6. Toys and treats - Bringing some of your cat's favorite toys and treats can help keep them entertained during the journey.

  7. ID tags and paperwork - Make sure that your cat is wearing an ID tag with your contact information. You should also bring any necessary paperwork, such as vaccination records, in case you need to show them at rest stops or hotels.

  8. Remember to take frequent breaks to allow your cat to stretch their legs, use the litter box, and get some fresh air. With these essential items and a little bit of planning, you and your cat can have a safe and enjoyable car trip together.

Air travel with a cat in India is possible, but it requires some additional preparation and planning. Here are some things to keep in mind if you're considering air travel with your cat:

  1. Check airline policies - Before you book your flight, make sure to check the airline's pet policy. Some airlines allow pets in the cabin, while others only allow them in the cargo hold. There may also be specific requirements, such as vaccination records or a health certificate.

  2. Get a pet carrier - You'll need to have an airline-approved pet carrier that meets specific size and safety requirements. Make sure to choose a carrier that your cat can comfortably stand up, turn around, and lie down in.

  3. Make a reservation - Most airlines have a limited number of pet spots available on each flight, so make sure to book early and reserve a spot for your cat.

  4. Prepare your cat for travel - If your cat is not used to being in a carrier, start getting them used to it a few weeks before your trip. You can do this by placing treats and toys inside the carrier and gradually increasing the amount of time they spend inside.

  5. Pack the essentials - Just like with car travel, you'll need to pack food, water, litter, medications, and any necessary paperwork for your cat.

  6. Arrive early - You'll need to arrive at the airport early to allow enough time for check-in and security screening. You may also need to provide additional documentation, such as vaccination records.

According to a press note issued in 2022, Akasa Air allows only two pets as of now. According to a press note, only two pets will be allowed as of now. An under-7 kg pet can travel in the aircraft cabin. Those between 7 and 32 kg must be checked in at the counter after passing through security. A pet heavier than 32 kg needs to be checked in via Cargo terminal.

Pet parents need to carry valid health, rabies vaccination, licence and other certificates as stipulated by the regulations, the note mentions.

According to sources, Air India does not allow pets which are pregnant and the pets should be atleast 8 weeks old to travel. Spice Jet also allows pets only in the Cargo.

Most of the Airlines do not allow pets, speak to the concerned airlines and make necessary arrangements. There are instances also where the airlines have rejected passenger who had all valid documents for pet travel. Only to be rejected by the commander of flight who refused the pet on board. Do your due homework before air travel with your pets.

So it will be wise to check with the airlines first for all details including extra fees if any, the cost for the pet ticket will be different. Also check out for pet tickets and other details and requirements as these keep on changing.

While there are some hotels in India that are pet-friendly, finding ones that specifically cater to cats can be a bit more challenging. However, there are some options available. Here are a few hotels in India that are known to welcome cats:

  1. Taj Coromandel, Chennai - This luxury hotel has a special "Paw Program" that allows guests to bring their cats (and dogs) along for their stay. They provide pet beds, food bowls, and even have a designated pet menu for in-room dining.

  2. Lemon Tree Hotels - This hotel chain has several locations throughout India and welcomes both cats and dogs. They have designated "pet floors" with rooms that have balconies, so your cat can enjoy some fresh air.

  3. JW Marriott Hotel Bengaluru - This luxury hotel has a "Pet Staycation" package that includes pet-friendly rooms, food and water bowls, and a special pet bed. They also provide a map of pet-friendly places to visit in the city.

  4. Treebo Trip Hotels - This hotel chain has a few pet-friendly properties throughout India, including some in popular tourist destinations like Goa and Jaipur.

While finding 4-star hotels in India that are specifically cat-friendly can be a bit of a challenge, there are some options available. Here are a few 4-star hotels in India that have a pet-friendly policy and may be willing to accommodate cats:

  1. Radisson Blu Hotel, Delhi - This hotel welcomes pets, including cats, and has designated rooms for pet owners. They also provide pet beds, food and water bowls, and pet-friendly menus for in-room dining.

  2. The Fern Residency, Mumbai - This hotel has a pet-friendly policy and allows both cats and dogs. They provide pet beds, food and water bowls, and even have a pet grooming service available.

  3. The Suryaa, New Delhi - This hotel welcomes pets and has designated floors for pet owners. They provide pet beds, food and water bowls, and a special pet menu for in-room dining.

  4. Novotel Goa Resort and Spa - This resort is located in a pet-friendly area and welcomes pets, including cats. They provide pet beds, food and water bowls, and even have a designated pet

It's important to note that each hotel may have its own specific pet policies and fees, so it's best to contact the hotel directly before booking to ensure that they can accommodate your cat and to get more details about their policies.

When traveling with your cat, it's a good idea to bring along some basic medications in case of an emergency. Here are some of the general medicines that you should consider packing:

Anti-diarrheal medication - This can help alleviate diarrhea or upset stomach caused by stress or a change in diet.

Anti-nausea medication - This can help prevent vomiting during car or air travel.Antihistamine - This can be used to treat minor allergic reactions or insect bites.

Topical antiseptic - This can be used to clean minor cuts or scratches.

Grooming supplies - Bring a brush or comb to keep your cat's fur neat and tidy.

In addition to packing the necessary medications, it's also important to prepare your cat for travel. Here are some tips for one day before travel preparation in India:

Visit the veterinarian - If you haven't already done so, take your cat to the vet for a check-up. This is especially important if you're traveling internationally.

Get necessary documentation - Make sure to obtain any necessary paperwork, such as a health certificate or vaccination records.

Prepare the carrier - If your cat will be traveling in a carrier, make sure to clean it thoroughly and add some comfortable bedding.

Limit food and water intake - The day before travel, limit your cat's food and water intake to prevent accidents during the journey.

Familiarize your cat with the carrier - Encourage your cat to spend some time in the carrier with their favorite toys and treats.

Relax and stay calm - Cats can pick up on their owner's stress, so it's important to stay calm and relaxed during the preparation process.

By taking these steps, you can help ensure that your cat is prepared and comfortable for travel, whether you're taking a road trip or flying to a new destination.

In Conclusion, Traveling with your cat can be an adventure, but with some planning and preparation, it can also be a lot of fun! Just remember to pack the essentials, including medications, food, and water, and to make sure your cat is comfortable and relaxed during the journey. And don't forget to take plenty of pictures along the way - after all, cats are known for their photogenic qualities!

So, grab your furry friend and hit the road (or the skies) - just be prepared for some meowing and maybe even some litter box mishaps. But hey, that's all part of the adventure, right?

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