I recently went back to NYC to get my cat. I literally made myself sick with anxiety for years at the thought of one day having to relocate with my cat. I’ve googled “long distance flying with pet cat” and “moving with cat” countless times, and I’m not sure anything really prepared me for what to expect.
I moved from New York to California (at first, by myself, and then I went back to get the furbaby). My cat has feline epilepsy, which she takes medicine for daily. Her seizures can be triggered by stress, and although she hasn’t had an episode in over a year, I still worry. She’s also about 8 years old.
Here is the ins and outs of my kitty’s trip.
Step 1 – Planning ahead
- I flew with my cat as an in-cabin pet. From what I’ve read, this is LOADS safer than checking a pet in. If you have you cat crated and sent by plane, you don’t know what will happen from when your cat leaves your hands to when you land and get your cat back. You can opt to add an in-cabin pet when you book your plane ticket. This cost me $125.
- I purchased a roomier carrier than I already had (I bought the Sherpa deluxe delta carrier). I wanted my cat to be as comfortable as possible during the trip. I made sure that the new carrier fit the size requirements as expressed by the airline.
- For domestic flights, my airline didn’t require any paperwork. I took my kitty the vet a couple of days prior to the trip to get some sedatives for her and also get her checked out before traveling.
Step 2 – The big day
- I didn’t fast my cat. My vet told me it wasn’t necessary. If my cat was going to have an accident, it was going to happen. It didn’t though! She was a trooper, holding it in.
- The total travel time was: 1 hour drive to the airport + 2.5 hours checking in, going through security, and waiting to board the plane + 5.5 hours on the plane + 1 hour getting out of the airport and driving to my apartment. TOTAL: 10 hours in the carrier.
- Checking in was relatively painless… It was going through security that sucked. Despite the airline customer service assuring me that my cat won’t need to be taken out of her carrier, TSA told me that the carrier would need to be scanned separately. They told me I would have to hold my cat, and go through the body scanner with her. I let the TSA people know that I couldn’t do that – my cat has never been in this sort of situation and was probably terrified, and she also hates being held. They took me to a small enclosed plastic room right next to the queue and had me take my cat out there. I highly recommend you insist on having your cat’s carrier scanned this way if there’s any fear that your cat might bolt. Also, my cat while she hates going into the carrier while at home, will gladly scamper in when she’s in an environment she’s unfamiliar with.
- The flight wasn’t too bad either. I sedated my cat as directed by my vet an hour before the flight. My cat was quiet for the entire flight, and car ride home.
Step 3 – Welcoming my cat home
- I made sure to set up the litter box in advance. As soon as I let my cat out of her carrier, I made sure she knew where the box was.
- I also showed her where her food and water bowl were.
- She was a bit out of it from the sedation, but it wasn’t too bad.
Step 4 – Cats are not the most well-adjusted creatures
The first two nights were kind of awful. My cat spent the second night crying and pacing the entire time. She also kept stepping on me and pawing my face, which is what she does when she wants food… But her food bowl was completely full. I got very little sleep.
It’s day three today, and I’m hoping she’ll settle down.
Mad at me
Big fluffy tail of fear
I hope this helps anyone who finds themselves in a similar predicament. I just wanted to let you know that it can be done… It has been done!
I took both Danbo and Sonny Angel out today. Some more obligatory beach photos, but I added footprints this time (probably not enough though)! The hotel also gave us this plate. No idea why. I guess… They assumed my parents are on a honey moon… And decided to bring their adult daughter with them. Sonny Angel is looking right at home ^^. Currently, Danbo is looking a little worse for the wear (Sorry Danbo). Danbo and Sonny Angel are pretty fun to photograph. They stand up by themselves without problem, and I’m getting the hang of playing with scale and my iPhone. In particular, Danbo is really photogenic (with that ( ﾟдﾟ) face).
My vacation away from life ends soon! I’m going to a Blythe meet soon, and I have a doll project in mind for when I get back (though with the weather being the way it is, I might have to postpone it). I also think that my 1 year bloggiversary (that doesn’t look right…) is coming up soon! Exciting times ^^.
I’m going to try to take it easy (instead of wanting to be productive, which on a vacation is counterproductive), so my next post will most likely be when I get back. I hope everyone is having a great start to the week!
I am exhausted. Blythe Con Chicago was my first Blythe convention, and it was all so very exciting and exhausting. I had no idea what to expect, and I also only knew a handful of people going. I’m kind of painfully awkward in large crowds and with strangers, and I’m not so great at self-introductions. I’m actually still a little frazzled from the day – visual overload with well over one hundred dolls and so many colors. To make this easy (for me), I’m going to split the experience in sections.
The Pre-meet: I only stopped by to say hello. There was quite a turn out, and some people vending small items. From photos the pre-meet looked pretty fun (… Next time!).
- Getting there – I recommend getting to the convention early. I got to BCC 15 minutes late, and had to queue for a bit to get in. If there’s an item you really want to purchase, and there’s a limited quantity, definitely get there early. I don’t mind so much queuing, especially since I kind of expect it at any convention, but I do feel the sense that I missed out on some good items (really wanted a pair of skinny jeans from a particular table!).
- The set up – I first checked in at the welcoming desk, and received my goody bag and name tag before going into the main hall. The venue was a huge open space with two rows of vendor tables on one side and tables for the attendees on the other.
- Shopping – so much shopping! I did some damage here. I was excited to see quite a number of the sellers as I had a shopping cart on etsy filled with a few of the items they were selling. It was also really nice meeting all of the vendors (super nice, super talented).
Vendor: Our Blythes
Vendor: Forty Winks
Vendor: Chantilly Lace
Vendor: Cmon Dolly
- Panels – there were a few panels held (Kenner panel, Intro to customizing, and a few others). I didn’t attend these as I lost track of time.
All the kenners!
- Meeting and greeting and sitting – I met a ton of nice people today. In this kind of setting, it’s definitely easier to make new friends as everyone is there because they love blythes and want to hang out with fellow Blythe lovers (XD I think). I also spent a lot of time sitting at a table… Resting my feet. I’ve been doing so much walking in Chicago and making several rounds to the vendor tables for browsing and shopping that my feet were killing me.
- Taking photos – I had a serious case of visual overload. So many colors! So many dolls to look at! There were a couple of sets for photo taking, and also so many beautiful dolls set up on tables. Some con goers also did smaller meet ups to take photos of dolls from the same customizer.
Dr. Blythenstein Yarn Heads
Plushimi customs to the left
Forty Winks custom
Posing in a set.
I had a great experience at my first convention. It amazes me that it was a completely fan-run convention. It was very organized and also everyone went home with a donated door prize (it was anything from a customized doll, a doll customization voucher, doll clothes, or doll accessories).
Next year Blythe con will be held in San Francisco! I hope to be there too ^^.
Also – will post photos of my haul when I get back home!