Traveling with your cats? Most likely, you’ll want to get a cat carrier where your cat is comfortable. All airlines require that your cat be in a carrier, so make sure you choose the right one. If you are traveling with a kitten, it may be a good idea to buy a carrier it will fit into for the next few years. Choosing the right carrier will make the trip better both for you and your cat.
One top factor in shopping for a cat carrier is ventilation, especially if your cat will go on a long trip or go in an airplane. Most carriers offer ventilated surfaces on at least three sides for air flow. If your cat is on a long trip, make sure to also have a bowl attachment for water. Also be certain that your cat carrier can be fastened shut, that none of the latches will come loose, especially for air travel. Metal nuts and bolts are best, as they are sturdy and difficult to undo. Some new cat carriers come with a top-loading feature, in which you can place your cat in from the top instead of the side (as some cats are impossible to get in!).
You have the option of a soft-sided carrier versus a hard-sided carrier, both of which have advantages and disadvantages. Soft sided-carriers may be easier on the cat when it is moving around in its space, but they are sometimes not as well ventilated. Keep in mind they are more difficult to clean.
One well-rated cat carrier is the Jazzy by Sherpa. It is airline compatible, well-ventilated with mesh surfaces, has washable liner, has a seat belt strap and folds into storage. It has side and front entry, and there is a handle and detachable shoulder strap.
Another great one is the Sherpa Milan carrier. It has four mesh handles for ventilation, a padded bottom board for stability, front and side entry and an inside leash ring. It also has a handle and shoulder strap, and can easily fit into storage.
Some carriers are meant for dogs, but cats can easily use them just as well. To get your cat used to its carrier, have it out in the house sometimes so that it becomes familiar with it. Put a blanket or towel inside, and give it treats when it goes in.