Tip 52 – Going on a trip – what to do with your cat
Many cat owners wonder what to do with their cat(s) when they go out of town or on vacation. Do you bring the cat with you, leave it at home or board the cat at a facility? The answer usually depends on the length of time involved.
In general cats are most ‘upset’ when both their environment and the people they love are absent.Cats love their regular routine in their regular environment. If you are going away for a weekend, it’s probably best to leave enough food and water for 2 days and let your cat stay home. Even though this is just a short duration, have someone drop in if possible. Multi-cat households fare better than a single cat household since the cats tend to keep each other company. A pet sitting service is a good idea if you don’t have anyone to drop in. Get a recommendation from your vet. If you are going away for longer than 2 days the cat can still stay home but you MUST have someone come in at least once a day to check on the cat and give it some love. Of course you can bring your cat with you, but the change in environment will probably cause your cat some stress and it may well exhibit behaviours that you are not used to.
If you must board your cat at a boarding facility make SURE you get a reference from someone you trust, like your vet. There are loads of bad boarding facilities so it is crucial that you inspect the facility before leaving your cat there. The facility should look and smell clean, should house dogs away from cats and should never keep 2 cats that don’t know each other in the same cage or area. Leave something with your scent on it at the facility. This will help soothe your cat during your absence.
Safety tip – Whenever you leave your cat alone for more than 1 day it’s crucial to have someone (preferably someone your cat knows and likes) come by, take a peek and give the cat a couple of rubs. Cats and especially kittens can easily get into trouble when you are gone. Leave the name and number of your veterinarian with the person dropping by just in case of any emergency.