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We all love our cats to bits and strive to make sure that they are happy, settled, well cared for and wanting for nothing while we are away! Often people worry that the ultimate best choice is to keep their cat at home in their own environment and that this is the most important decision above all else.
There are a number of things to think about and several options available:
Neighbour/ Friend
There is often an obliging neighbour or friend who offers to ‘feed the cat’ while you are away. There is usually no additional cost involved and the cat can stay at home which initially sounds like an attractive option!
Many cats, however, enjoy human contact and company – albeit on their own terms. They can become lonely if left alone in the house with only a brief visit from a stranger once or twice a day, especially if it is for more than just a couple of days.
If your cat goes missing or doesn’t turn up at tea time, this can cause a great deal of anxiety to the person responsible for your cat’s care. If your cat develops any kind of medical problem this could be overlooked if a person is just popping in for a few minutes every day. Sometimes people are fine dealing with the cat’s food but not so keen on handling litter trays. Trying to give medication to a cat when you are either inexperienced or unfamiliar to the cat can be a complete non starter!
“Pet Sitter”
Some people employ the services of a “pet sitter” ( a term that can be misleading ) – many of these will visit once or twice a day to check on the cat and to feed it and deal with litter trays. Service varies with regards to how much human contact time the cat will have in this arrangement. Although your cat/s are staying in their own home, it’s likely that they will be left alone and without human contact for up to 23 hours per day. If the cat has a cat flap and can come and go independently then sitter may never have much opportunity to spend time with the cat or to really check how he is doing.
There are pet sitters who come and stay in the house for the entire duration of your holiday to care for the cat. Obviously this means that the cat has company and can stay at home but this arrangement is usually very costly. It also means that you could have a stranger staying in your house.
Standards of accommodation and care in catteries can vary enormously. It is always best to look at a few catteries before booking your cat in to stay to make sure you know exactly what accommodation and service is on offer and you can ask any questions that you may have.
At Catseye Cattery we offer the very best individual care for your cat. We keep a close eye on whether your cat is settling or whether there are any signs of stress or anxiety. We monitor whether the cat is feeding well and using the litter tray regularly and appropriately. We make sure the cats get their regular preferred food and encourage customers to bring with them familiar rugs etc from home. If your cat is on medication we are happy to administer this as required. There is always someone around in the cattery and each individual cat is visited regularly. Some cats, especially kittens and young cats, need extra attention to ensure they are stimulated and have toys etc to keep them amused. Older cats may not require so much stimulation but we make sure that they are comfortable and warm and have everything they need. When cats return to stay with us on a regular basis we get to know the customers and the cats as individuals and they learn to trust us and become much more relaxed in our care. Our pens are spacious and the peaceful countryside offers an idyllic setting with plenty of countryside interest to watch.
We are always on hand to pick up on any signs of illness or problems, and always spend extra time if needed either helping an anxious cat settle and trust us, or grooming a cat who enjoys it.  We can be in regular contact with owners to give updates on progress and give reassurance that their cat is settled and content. We can send e-mails and photos and we also have a webcam facility which can provide additional reassurance to an anxious owner.
We have many customers who have previously never used a cattery, even some with quite elderly cats. It is so rewarding watching both customer and cat relax and become confident in us and the care we provide. Many customers tell us that it is so reassuring knowing that their cat will be safe and comfortable with us while they are away so that they can enjoy their holiday without any worries!