3 Cat Care Options To Consider When Going On Holiday
Planning a holiday that doesn't involve your cat can leave you feeling anxious and worried about arranging suitable care for them while you're away. There are several high-quality care options available, but the best fit for your cat will depend on their personality and individual needs. Here's an overview of three cat care options for you to consider:
Staying With A Friend Or Neighbour
Sending your cat on their own little holiday to a friend or neighbour's house can be a good option for sociable cats who don't get stressed in new environments or when their routine is changed. Cats are territorial animals, so this option may not be appropriate if the person your cat is going to stay with has cats of their own, as fighting and blocking access to the litter box and food bowls can occur. You'll also want to make sure the person looking after your cat has experience of caring for cats, knows your cat's routine, has your vet's contact details and can provide one-on-one playtime to keep your cat stimulated. Cats also need to have places they can retreat to for peace and quiet, so ensure their host is able to provide some hide-away areas, such as a cardboard box behind the couch or a cat igloo in a quiet room.
In-Home Cat Sitter
A professional cat sitting service can be a good option for particularly timid cats that would benefit from staying in their own home and having access to their own comfort items while you're away. You can opt to have a cat sitter visit your home a couple of times a day to feed your cat, clean their litter box and play with them, or you can hire a cat sitter to live in your home and care for your cat full-time while you're on holiday. This is an expensive option, and you'll have to consider whether you're comfortable with someone you don't know having access to your home, but it does prevent disruption to your cat's routine.
A cattery is a more cost-effective option than hiring a cat sitter, but you still have the benefit of experienced cat carers looking after your cat. Facilities can vary from cattery to cattery, but your cat will have their own boarding bay complete with litter tray, feeding bowls, a bed and temperature control system to keep them comfortable. You can also take your cat's favourite toys and comfort items with them to the cattery. Cat boarding can be a good option for cats that don't get stressed when other cats are present. Cats are kept separate from one another to prevent territorial behaviour, but they can usually see the other boarders from their bay. Some catteries offer communal exercise areas, secluded bays for anxious cats, pre-boarding visits to familiarise cats with the cattery and programs of daily one-on-one playtime with a member of staff.
All three care options can provide your cat with high-quality care, but when choosing a care option for your cat, allow plenty of time to meet with prospective carers, visit facilities and check references.