As I prepare to head over to Korea I’ve decided to really crack down on trying to train Einstein to be ok in his kennel so the trip will go as well as possible for him. Like a typical cat he absolutely HATES being caged up in that little space. The flight itself is 11 hr 25 min, not to mention the loading and unloading time…That’s a long time to be caged up. And from all the research I’ve done the AVMA and the American Humane Association strongly caution against the use of sedatives or tranquilizers before a flight. The reason is that, whether in baggage, or the passenger compartment, the increased altitude pressures of approximately 8,000 feet can contribute to heart and lung problems, often causing death. It prevents them from being able to regulate their temperature, and heart rate.
So I’ve decided to build him up little by little from now until the flight September 24th. Last night I closed him in the kennel for the first time and decided to keep him in there until he calmed down. It took a pretty good amount of time, more than I expected. Maybe around 40 minutes. It wasn’t pretty, I was afraid he would hurt himself at first. He was thrashing around, trying to tear his way out on all sides, slamming into the walls. And then he started in on the food dishes hanging on the door. Luckily I didn’t have any water or food in it. He tried using them as a stepping stool to push his way up and out. Then he methodically began tearing them up and away, biting and scratching and tearing off the no-spill lids and then starting to tear off the dish itself from the door.
I kept him in sight of me and talked to him a bit trying to calm him. In the end he did calm, and then peed, so I let him out so he wouldn’t have to stay in there laying in it. Popped the door open and went back to my spot on the couch for him to walk out on his own. Surprisingly there was no retaliation, he came up for some kitty rubs then walked off to the bedroom.