You’re finally taking a well-deserved vacation away from the day-to-day grind, but taking your four-legged feline along with you is out of the question. While cats are largely considered rather self-sufficient pets to have, when they’re accustomed to having humans around they can feel lonely, frustrated or stressed without you. You want the best for your cat, even while you’re away, so a solid strategy for their care while you’re on the road will ensure she’s happy and safe.
Read on for helpful 5 tips for leaving your cat behind at home with a reliable care plan to give you, and your cat, some much needed peace of mind during your trip.
Before you jetset off to hike in the Rockies or check out the Avengers Campus, determine what sort of accomodations you will secure for your feline. Cats are a lot more comfortable and do better in their own space, so it’s best if you’re able to find a friend, family member or neighbor to stop by at least once, but preferably twice, per day to feed your cat, give him water and spend some time with him.
It’s not always possible to find someone to come to check on your cat. In these cases, it’s important to find the right boarding facility for your cat’s temperament and personality. Check out different facilities before your trip to make sure they’re well taken care of and are quiet, clean and free of strong odors that could raise your cat’s stress levels.
Your cat will feel a lot more comfortable in your absence if their routine remains consistent and stable. Write down your typical care schedule and any relevant pieces of information that will help your cat’s caregiver provide the same level of care that you would. Include her feeding schedule, litter box maintenance instructions, phone numbers for her veterinarian and any important details about your cat’s habits.
As you’re packing for your trip and getting your cat’s food and water bowls set up, take a moment to walk around your home to look for potential hazards that could risk your cat’s safety. Common things to look out for are opened windows, unlocked or opened doors, breakable items or anything your cat could choke on. Look high and low and consider all potential hazards. If something seems like it could be an issue, it’s better to be cautious.
A boarding facility should have steps in place that guarantee your cat’s safety, and it’s a good idea to ask what they are when touring the building.
Cats can grow bored fairly easily, and it’s important they have varied ways to get both physical and mental stimulation on their own. If you’re boarding your cat, ask how many times a staff member will visit with him per day to play and entertain him. It may be possible for you to leave toys and treats with your cat when you drop him off.
At home, give your cat a few different ways to engage their senses. Leave the blinds open so he can look out the window, leave a radio or television on at a low volume for ambient noise and leave toys around so they have a few options for play.
It can be stressful to leave your cat behind, and it’s okay to ask for daily updates about how your cat is doing, including how they’re eating, feeling or behaving. It may seem as though you’re being intrusive or overbearing, but digital communication makes it easy for your cat’s sitter to send a photograph, a single text update or even a quick phone call. Brief updates show that you care about your cat, and receiving a message about your beloved pet can go a long way in relieving some of the stress you may experience about leaving them.