So what is the best option for your cat while you’re away?
Consideration should be given to your cat’s:
- and behaviour.
Home is where the heart is, and for a cat, home is where the comfort is.
The most common options for a cat while you’re on holiday are:
- A hotel stay at a cattery
- A staycation at home with a pet sitter
Let’s discuss what to take into consideration when choosing the right option for your cat.
How to take care of a kitten while on holidayIs your cat young and prone to getting up to mischief? Kittens are prone to getting into trouble at the best of times due to their inquisitive natures and high energy drives. Common risks are falling, choking and foreign body ingestion and these can all be mitigated by a stay in a cattery. Plus, your kitten will have more attention and play sessions.
Is your cat on medication or has a chronic illness?If your cat regularly requires medications or close monitoring for a medical condition, this is best done in a cattery where records can be kept and your cat will be checked regularly.
Does your cat love people?Sometimes two visits a day just won’t cut it! A cattery where your cat is patted, groomed and played with may be the best idea! They will enjoy the human attention of which there will be more and of a higher quality than staying at home and having two quick visits a day. Alternatively, having someone stay in your house for the duration would work and provides stability for your pet.
Does your cat love going outside?
Outside cats are happiest when they can roam. All they need is someone to check on them and feed them, accepting the fact that your cat sitter may not see your cat.
An outside cat that is suddenly forced to stay inside or go to a cattery is likely to suffer distress with its confinement.
In a cattery, the stress levels of these cats may prevent them from being able to comfortably perform their normal behaviours.
Does your cat a cat-cat, not a people-cat?
Some cats have not been well socialised with humans and a hands-off approach to their care will be appreciated.
They may appreciate a carer that spends minimal time in the house where their food, water and litter tray requirements are met before getting their space back to themselves. Cats that don’t respond well to change or find stress overwhelming also will benefit.
Is your cat older and sensible?Older cats are less likely to wander and spend more time sleeping enjoying their comforts so staying at home can be a better option for them. They are less likely to get into accidents like their younger selves.
You have worked out what your cat would like best, now how do you find a great cat sitter or cattery?
What makes a good cat sitter?
- Should like cats! This is a must -you want someone who will love and care for your cat the same way you would
- Be knowledgeable about cat behaviours and their requirements – so that they can pick up on any concerns, such as if your cat stops eating or if there is trouble using the litter tray etc…
- Be reliable and committed – your cat needs daily checks, maybe more! Your sitter must be able to fit your cat in their day
- Arranging a meet and greet can be beneficial to assess how they treat your cat and how your cat responds to them
- A police check is recommended if you’ve never met the sitter before and they’ll be coming into your home
What makes a good Cattery?
- You want a cattery that caters to cats only, no dogs! Cats need a calm and quiet environment with as little stress as possible
- Each cat has their own secure and safe unit with a sleeping area and an exercise area. Barriers should be impermeable to prevent cats seeing each other and sniffing which may cause stress and transmit disease
- Should feed your cat’s same diet and use the same litter if possible – you could provide this for the duration of your cat’s stay to help them settle into the cattery space
- There should be no communal areas for multiple cats to use unless the cats know each other and live together
- Kept clean and warm/cool depending on the season
- Check your cat’s vaccination card to ensure they are up to date with vaccinations to help minimise the spread of disease
- Should spend time with your cat – grooming, patting, giving treats and playing for some cats is very important
- Cats should be checked regularly with any problems promptly addressed. It is great to leave your vet’s details with the cattery or ensure the cattery has a vet clinic available if your cat needs anything.