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How to find camping facilities for indoor cats & parrots

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my plan is to move my two parrots & eleven cats from PA to WA in sept. my BFF just went nuts on me & told me it was impossible, the trailer would be contaminated, nobody would let me camp & wherever i DID camp, grizzlies out west would smell the cats & break into my trailer.

 

i am intent on making this work, even if i have to drive myself all the way. i am being positive. i saw my vet yesterday & she said the cats will need to be in carriers in the trailer while on the road. she will work with me on sedation. (the birds will be in carriers in the truck.)

 

i could use suggestions on finding campgrounds. i would like to be able to plug in at night. i am also on a very limited budget. the cats will not leave the trailer, and if i sit for a day in place the birds have a portable outdoor cage. i am brand new to all of this, & still have to purchase vehicles. thanks in advance for any positive advice.

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As far as the bear issue is concerned I think your friend maybe overly concerned. I am glad to hear that your vet has helped you understand the need for cat to be in a carrier. As far as campgrounds go I can only recomend planning your route and then chose parks along the way. Call them and explain how many cats you have and that they will not be outside to roam around and plan to stick with that commitment. That includes them all being outside in a portable open top pen. As for the birds. Well someone who travels with one may chime in with better answers

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I'd not sedate the cats, get them used to the carriers at home then transition them to the carrier in the RV, after they are used to that take them for short drives. They should do just fine if given a chance to see they aren't in danger. There is a rare cat that will need sedation but save it for any cats that are having panic attacks, not just yowling because they are not happy.

 

Strap down the carriers and bird cages so a fast stop or swerve won't rattle them and all should arrive just fine.

 

Avoid parks that won't take animals or ones like some KOAs that charge a few dollars per animal. You should be able to find plenty on line but you could always order a big book from camping world with thousands of parks in it for a few bucks.

 

Wouldn't worry about bears unless you leave food outside.

 

I'd keep the birds inside for the trip, too much chance of something going wrong as they'd have no hope of finding their way back to a strange spot they had only been in for a few hours.

 

Edit:

Do not trust the catch on the RV screen door if it is like most, one good sized cat thump and it can pop open! Check your window screens too, some are fine and some will pop out too easily.

Edited by Stanley P. Miller

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...Avoid parks that won't take animals or ones like some KOAs that charge a few dollars per animal. You should be able to find plenty on line but you could always order a big book from camping world with thousands of parks in it for a few bucks...

I totally agree that with the number of pets that you have you should avoid campgrounds that charge extra for pets. There may be some KOAs that charge for pets, but we have not found them. We have stayed in at least 25 different KOAs in the last 5 years from the East coast to Montana and none of them have charged for pets. In fact, the only place that we have encountered a pet charge was Virginia State Parks, although some other state parks prohibit pets completely. We have traveled with as many as three dogs and a cat and never had a problem finding campgrounds.

 

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grizzlies out west would smell the cats & break into my trailer.

 

This gave me a good chuckle! I wonder if your friend has ever been out West?

 

It's doubtful that you will ever see a Grizzly up close and personal. The only time we've seen them were when we visited Yellowstone and Alaska, but only from afar.

 

Even if you are camping someplace, like a Forest Service campground, that might have bears (and they're more likely to be black bears), it's highly unlikely that they'd try to break into your "hard sided" RV to get at the cats. As has already been mentioned, don't leave food outside.

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Have you found an RV yet, and if so what do you have?

 

Most RV parks are going to ask if you have pets and if so, what & how many even if they are inside only. While it is very true that many parks do not charge extra for pets, it is also true that many parks limit the number a customer may have. Unless you are willing to lie about the number, the cats may be a problem. I'd be surprised if any park was concerned about the parrots, but that number of cats will create a significant amount of concern with many of the park managers. I think that you will be taking a major risk of not finding a place that will accept you unless you get yourself some form of campground guide and contact the parks before you get there. In addition that will allow you to determine what your budget for campgrounds will be. It is rare for an RV park to charge less than $30 or more today. In our recent trip from TX up through KS and MO to Escapade, then via IA and MN to SD for the summer, we stayed in nice but not luxurious RV parks and the price ranged from a low of $34 to a high of $44.90. There was an exception to this in the two nights spent in a county park near Cedar Rapids, IA where it was $20/night for water & electric only.

 

On the bear issue, grizzly bears are probably the least likely problem you could possibly have. If you should see one it will probably be when visiting a zoo. With the exception of one campground in Yellowstone NP there is no campground along your route where there is any chance of that at all. Black bears could be a problem if you stay in federal, state or possibly county parks along the route and do not take proper precautions with food stuffs but you will be hard pressed to find any commercial RV parks where bears are seen more than rarely. I think that someone is just trying desperately to convince you not to do this.

Edited by Kirk

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Linda H - thanks for the confirmation; now i can LMAO also. my friend has been across the country & back four times. she lives on the Olympic Peninsula & camp all over the place. i think she is just going off on me so she doesn't take it out on her husband. this will pass; we been besties for 39 years.

 

Stanley - the birds never go outside unless in a cage, & with me. my vet had the same advice - set up carriers in the house so everyone gets used to them. the big problem is the two ferals - three humans in a 10x10 room took ten minutes to catch Miss Giselle. she & Mr. Chiquita will have to stay in a big dog crate - & i will have to sedate them (hidden in food) to get them in there.

 

here in the house i put hardware cloth over the window screens...and have to be sure the door is latched or Domino will escape.

 

Kirk, i will most likely claim 6 cats - the rest are spooky & will never be seen. i know better than to leave food out - here i make sure there is food on trash night or the coons will tear everything up!

 

thanks so much. no, i don't have vehicles yet - that will be mid-July.

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We have 3 cats (formerly 4) and since none of them ever leave the RV I tell the RV park that we have no pets. What possible difference would it make to them that they think would effect the price we pay. If you have dogs and plan to use their facilities for a dog run or similar or they want to charge a fee to cover their expenses of having to clean up after an irresponsible pet owner, that might be justified. My cats, even if I had 11, are not going to have any cost associated with that parks facilities and I consider and indoor only pet......no pet.

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If you find out how to keep a bird quite, maybe it could be used on those obnoxious kids next door! That's what I want to know how to keep quiet. At least I know those birds are not going to be running through my site, crushing my sewer hose or stealing whatever I made the mistake of leaving out in the open.

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Bill, we do not charge extra for pets, but we do like to know if they are in the coach. It could make a difference in an emergency....we would attempt to help the critters, or in excess heat call you if you were out....things like that....

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Bill, we do not charge extra for pets, but we do like to know if they are in the coach. It could make a difference in an emergency....we would attempt to help the critters, or in excess heat call you if you were out....things like that....

Thats exactly why I always tell them about our cat, even though many campgrounds only ask about dogs.

I also have a sign at the door with his picture and my cell phone number.

 

Sue

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i don't expect to be leaving my trailer for more than a few minutes while at a campground. the birds will probably do their daily screaming while on the road with me & listening to music.

my latest ordeal, since my BFF bailed on me & i won't have her & hub to drive with me, is this - my stepmom said "don't go through WY - the winds are 90 MPH & it was hard to keep the car on the road," which got my dad all upset. thanks, stepmom - my dad was supportive till that moment. i say, a weather hazard is a weather hazard - be it high wind, thunderstorms, etc. - time to pull over. also she said "get rid of your cats." this was like a knife in my heart - my animals are my family.

 

thanks all for listening & giving support & advice!

 

i am looking into battery-operated fans for the trailer & even found a fan that fits on top of a cooler filled with ice.

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Winds and hail can be problems but listening to local AM radio stations along the way can help you avoid bad problems. A weather radio is even better and less aggravation but it isn't free.

 

We'd listen for weather alerts and adjust our travel plans to miss big storms, often that would be as simple as pulling off at a rest stop and parking for a few hours or skipping a planned stop and getting past the bad area before the expected problems hit.

 

If you do get stuck in high winds, beyond what you feel in control in, just pull over and park until they drop to safe levels. Parked your rig will be much less likely to have a wind problem than while driving.

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Stanley, thank you - your advice is always helpful!

 

Ronbo, you sure got that right! i'm hoping to meet some Escapees on the road!

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i am looking into battery-operated fans for the trailer & even found a fan that fits on top of a cooler filled with ice.

Most travel trailers have at least one ceiling vent. If there is only one, it is often in the bathroom and equipped with a fan that runs on the 12V system of the trailer. The factory installed ones are often not that good, but there are a wide variety of replacements available and they can even be replaced with a good 12V computer fan. If one puts a cover like a Maxxair on the vent, it can be left open while under way. A Turbo/Maxx fan can be installed on a ceiling vent and runs on 12v. At high speed they move 900CFM of air so will affect a complete air change in most trailers in less than half an hour. We run ours on exhaust letting the fresh air be drawn in from the vent without the fan. Before someone brings it up, yes leaving vents open can bring in some dust, but they are on the roof and are not exposed to most of the road dust and the openings are facing the rear of the trailer. It may not be possible with so many pets, but when we have traveled with dogs and cats in the trailer we put them in the bedroom with the door closed. The ceiling vent was open and the Turbo/Maxx fan on exhaust.

 

We have a Midland Weather Radio that has served us well in avoiding severe weather from the Southeast through the plains states. If you do have to pull over and park due to high winds, try to park head into the wind. The wind will flow over the tow vehicle and trailer just as the air does while driving.

Edited by TCW

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my stepmom said "don't go through WY - the winds are 90 MPH & it was hard to keep the car on the road," which got my dad all upset. thanks, stepmom - my dad was supportive till that moment. i say, a weather hazard is a weather hazard - be it high wind, thunderstorms, etc. - time to pull over. also she said "get rid of your cats." this was like a knife in my heart - my animals are my family.

Darn.... WY is one of my favorites.... Sure will miss it..... 90MPH really? Surprised they have any trees left, or roofs for that matter.

Winds can be a problem for any RV anywhere.... solution.... (as in your response) Don't drive on that day, same as with any hazardous weather!!

 

Sounds like someone might have some pretty strong apron strings....

 

Dave

Edited by Dave & Renee

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I was reminded of the wind in Fargo, ND early July of 99 where we sat out some 100 MPH plus stuff. No problems but just in case we left the slide in and truck hooked to the fiver for extra stability. We did have to spend two extra days there while they removed downed trees on the park's exit roads.

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Sounds like someone might have some pretty strong apron strings....

 

 

the sad thing is, my father (the man who taught me to question everything) BELIEVED her! i wonder how they manage to keep it within the state borders...

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... also she said "get rid of your cats."...

Of course get rid of the cats. Cats attract strong winds and tornados. Everyone knows that. I'm surprised that your stepmom doesn't know that parrots attract earthquakes and fires.

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You might want to get a little spray bottle to shoot a stream of water at kitties who are thinking about exiting a screen door. It didn't take many shots before all I had to do was show Kitty the pink bottle and she'd back away from the door.

 

Found a little 3" one in the travel-size section of toiletries at Walmart. Kept it on a hook by the front door where it was easy for the trainer to reach and the trainee to see and associate with the lesson. =^..^=

 

BTW, look for hooks in the 3-M Command section. Easy to put up and take down without damaging your RV walls.

 

Good luck moving your herd. "Don't let anyone tell you herding cats is easy," but it can be done.

 

Here's the evidence: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pk7yqlTMvp8

Edited by rocksbride

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i keep a spray bottle right next to the kitchen door to keep the kitties away from it. usually, all i have to do is pick it up - but they ARE cats, & will conveniently "forget", so they get reminders.

 

i knew i could count on this gang for some good humor! i am feeling so much better. now i just need someone to buy the house, and find a cheap & excellent truck & trailer. fingers crossed. yard sale in two weeks to try and de-accumulate 17 years of collecting everything in sight with four floors to store it on. yikes!

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Maybe cats like some birds but when a dozen peacocks and peahens show up to look in the screendoor the cats spend some quality time under the recliner.

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