Why Your Cat Might Prefer a Home and Pet Sitter This Summer
Cats are creatures of habit. How they live their lives on a day to day basis will depend on your routine. They will know when you are likely to wake up. Who hasn’t had their cat jumping on their head as a wakeup call as they are sleeping in!
Cats tend also to know when they will be fed and, if you go to work, will most likely know roughly the times you leave and return. Some cats even wait on the street when they know their owner is due back.
So what happens when you go on holiday? Well, the cat’s routine is thrown out of the window, especially if you decide to take your cat to a cattery or have someone just pop in and feed them once a day. This can make for one unhappy cat.
Cats usually dislike catteries if they haven’t been used to going from a young age. And even then they may not actually enjoy the experience. Cats do not like being in an unfamiliar environment. This is why people don’t usually take their cat on weekends away to see friends, unlike their canine companions.
What’s the solution then? Well, we’re finding more cat owners are employing home and pet sitters who come and stay in their home when they go away. This means the cat can stay in its own environment, plus the home looks occupied which can help prevent burglaries. The main advantage for your cat though is that you can brief the homesitter on the cat’s usual routine.
They will then be fed, groomed, let outside, cuddled as usual. Whilst your cat may still not be completely at ease, as it’s not their actual owner, we find it’s a far less stressful way to get your cat cared for when you go on holiday. For cats that need medication or older cats that are not too well it is also a good solution to ensure your cat is looked after well with minimal disruption.
Many of our homesitters have regular clients too. This means the cat gets to know them and they become like a family friend visiting. For households that have more than one cat or also have a dog, employing a home and pet sitter can save on the costs of catteries and kennels, as well as the inconvenience of taking them to different places.
One couple that has been using homesitters to look after their cat Tilly are teachers Lyndsey Weekes and her partner Ian, who live on the outskirts of Liverpool. They first started using homesitters when they moved house and didn’t have anyone to look after Tilly.
In their previous home neighbours would look after her while they were away, but at their new home, they have no close neighbours and no one nearby who could help. They were keen to avoid putting Tilly in a cattery.
Lyndsey explains, “I wanted to minimise the stress for Tilly, she’s an elderly cat we adopted a couple of years ago when her owner moved into a care home. Tilly likes her home comforts and routine. Like most cats, she is territorial and doesn’t like change, so I didn’t consider putting her in a cattery.”
Their first homesitter, Bill came to the house to meet Lyndsey, Ian and Tilly before the scheduled the homesit and the couple felt reassured leaving their pet and their home in Bill’s hands, in fact he has home sat for them several times since that first assignment.
Lyndsey says, “Bill is very calm and capable as well as flexible and understanding. He really seems to care about Tilly which is very important to us, and knowing she is in such safe hands has taken away all the anxiety I used to feel when packing for a holiday and preparing everything for Tilly.
“Tilly no longer sulks when we get home from a holiday and this is a real bonus. When our neighbours used to feed her whilst we were away she used to sulk when we got home. Now her routine carries on as normal and the homesitter becomes her ‘substitute parent’ – in fact we’ve taken to calling Bill, ‘Uncle Bill’. She sleeps on his bed and enjoys sitting on the arm of the sofa so he can scratch her under the chin and she is perfectly happy when we come home,” adds Lyndsey.
If you are heading away on holiday this summer and want the reassurance that your cat is happy and content in their own home, then give Homesitters a call on 01296 630 730.