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Going Away For 5 Weeks, Leaving Cats at Friends or Home?

January 19th, 2011, 12:54 PM
Hi Guys,

I'm going to be going away for 5 weeks for a wedding, I cannot take my cats with me because they might end up getting sick there..

Would you guys recommend leaving them at home or at a friends?
My original plan was to leave them at home and have someone drop by every 4 days, also to leave self feeders/waterers.. was also going to leave a couple of webcams on to see how they are doing..

Also, will they like me the same? I know its probably a silly question, but one of my two cats spends the most time with me, and I want that to stay the same.. So I guess my second question is will my cats change when I return?

Thanks for reading, appriciate your feedback :]

Dog Dancer
January 19th, 2011, 12:56 PM
There are many more experienced cat owners here than me, it's been a long time since I had cats, but, I think 5 weeks is a long time to be alone. Would it be possible to have someone stay at your house while you are gone? That way the cats would have company at night at the very least. I do think they'll suffer from no contact for that long.

January 19th, 2011, 04:18 PM
I've cat-sat in the past, and I can honestly say that cats miss their humans, badly!
If you could leave them with someone, or have someone house/cat sit, I think they'd be happier.

January 19th, 2011, 04:19 PM
WOW,I would never have someone come in only every 4 days,that's a recipe for disaster.
Cats are always better off in their own home,but if you cannot have someone stay there with them for 5 weeks,it might be better if they go to your friend.
5 weeks is a long time,even if someone comes in every day.
IMO,every 4 days is just crazy,anything can happen to them in 4 days.

I was lucky when we traveled,our son stayed at our house and he loves cats,maybe you know such a person,you can trust in your home:cat:

January 19th, 2011, 06:48 PM
I cat sit my friends crew and as attached as they are to there mom & dad they like having me there I think it makes the comfortable

January 19th, 2011, 11:07 PM
5 weeks is a long time to leave your kitties alone in a house with someone coming every 4 days. 4 days is not often enough to have the cats checked on. My feeling on this is if you can't find someone willing to come to your house and stay for the 5 weeks then your cats would be better off at a friend's house with their toys/litterboxes, etc. They need some familiar things with them if staying at a friends.
Let's do a couple of what ifs.
What happens if the kitties decided to play in their water and spilled it all in the first day? They would go 3 days with no water. What happens if they spill it in their dry food? The food grows mouldy (starting after 20 minutes) and they can't eat. Canned food can't be left out for that long. If they didn't eat it all the first day it would not be good for them after that. What if one of them was jumping and missed its' intended target and hurt itself? No, you probably don't want to think about that one.
Really, you need someone to house/cat sit while you are gone. Your cats would thank you for that.
As for not feeling the same about you when you come back - there may be an initial ignoring - You left and I am not going to pay attention to you - period. Cats are good at doing that. But after the sulk is over things will return to normal.

January 20th, 2011, 06:06 AM
I have 5 cats and would never, never leave them with just someone coming in every four days.
When I am going to be on a short visit..say 2-3 days, I will have someone come in at least twice a day for fresh food and water, litter scooping and so on.
If, I am going to be away I was over the holidays...I have someone stay at my house. This person does not have to stay there every single minute...when I'm with them I go in and out all day long...but it does make a difference to the cats and makes me feel more secure.
I have been told that my cats sorely miss me when I am gone...sitter sometimes had trouble getting them to eat or they cry and wander. (Surprisingly, I dont travel much :))
If you cannot have someone stay at your house, then I would recommend leaving them with a friend you very much trust and make sure they have their own toys, boxes and blankets or a nightie with your smell to take with them. It will provide some sense of security for them and possibly lessen their separation anxiety.
Five weeks is a long time, but
kitty will remember you. I sometimes get a "cold shoulder" from one or two when I come home...but that passes really quickly and I swear it is just a snub to let me know they are displeased with my leaving. :D
You did not say how many cats are involved, with my crew, it is easier to have someone come in, but maybe 2, possibly 3 cats, could be relocated for a while as long as they are going somewhere they can be accomodated safely and have room to wander.

doggy lover
January 20th, 2011, 10:04 AM
When I had to leave my dog and cats for a week one time I had someone they knew come and stay in my home for a week. They still had their home and all the familiar surroundings, the dog lost 10lbs as he would not eat while we were gone only the human food she was giving him. The most I ever leave my cats are 2 days without someone coming in to check on them. My friend use to go away for the winter and we would take her cat for that period of time he is a young cat and had known us since he was a kitten so he had no problems fitting into our home with our cats and dog.. But now Marty has been living with us for over a year, she decided that he was happier with us and now he is here to stay.:D I too think leaving them for 5 weeks and only having someone come in every 4 days is not such a good idea talk it out with friends and family maybe they could rotate on someone staying a week or so at a time for you so its not so long for them.

January 23rd, 2011, 04:09 PM
I agree with everyone else - ideally you'd want someone to come stay at your place, but if your only option is for them to stay with a friend (who has a kitty-proofed house and will be there to care for them properly), I'd go that route. We're planning some upcoming trips (nothing longer than 12 days) and I've asked a friend to house/kitty-sit for us. She'll come twice a day and spend a few hours with them, and spend a few nights here as well. That way they'll have someone to play with, their litter box will be clean, and they can stay on their current feeding schedule.

As far as them loving you the same - I had a similar worry in 2009. I was ill and had to live somewhere else for medical treatment - I was gone for 2 months, then home for 2 weeks, then gone for another 6 weeks. My husband was home with them (rarely, as he was mostly with me) or we had a pet sitter, but they were used to spending tons of time with me, sleeping with me, and getting constant attention from me. I was terrified that they'd forget me - but the second I walked in the door, they ran to me. They weren't even sulky - they snuggled up with me and it was like I'd never left. Your babies will miss you and may be a bit peeved when you return, but they'll know you when you get back!

And I think the kitty cam idea is great - my husband set one up for me so I could watch them while I was away - and even though they were only sleeping, it was comforting to see them. :lovestruck: