What to do with your cat when you go on holiday

The sun is meant to be shining in the UK but if you’ve had enough of the wash out August you might have booked yourself a sunny escape.

But before you book that three week holiday, you must think about where your kitty is going to spend their time while you soak up some rays.

There are a number of options out there for you but bear in mind your cat’s personality and how comfortable they would feel with each option.

A cat eating a good meal.

Who will look after your pet when you go on holiday?

Taking your cat away with you

Cats Protection does not recommend you take your cat away with you. The upheaval of leaving you pet leaving their home can be very stressful and make them feel disorientated by the strange smells. It can also mean they have to be contained in one room for fear of them going missing in unfamiliar territory, which could cause problems.

Booking into a cattery

Booking into a cattery can give you almost total peace of mind that your cat will be safe and sound while you are away.

The great thing is your cat is being looked after by professionals while you are away and means they won’t have time to get lonely because they will be around people and other animals at all times. But this can mean that the experience is stressful for some cats who do not like being away from home or within a busy environment.

If you are going to book into a cattery:

  • select one that is licensed by a local authority
  • visit it before you decide on the one for your beloved pet. Make sure food and water bowls are clean and tidy and there is no bad smell
  • ensure your cat’s vaccinations are up-to-date so that they are protected from any illnesses they might catch from other cats staying there
  • ask the cattery if they can feed your cat their usual food and take a piece of clothing which smells of you or your house, so the cattery doesn’t seem so unfamiliar

Find out what catteries are near you in East Sussex.

Book a daily pet sitter

Keeping your cat within your home is by far the best option and least unsettling for them. There are more and more pet sitters springing up in Brighton which offer daily care for a small fee. Depending on which service you go with the pet sitter can visit your cats once or twice or day to feed and water them and may offer an optional extra of playing with your cats while they’re there.

Most pet sitters will ask to meet you and your cats before you go on holiday. This is your chance to tell them about your cat, their likes and dislikes and to familiarise them with your house.

Ask a friend, family member or neighbour to feed them

This is the cheapest option and can be the most attractive after you’ve spent money on your holiday.

This can work out well but it is a high level of responsibility for that person to take on, so if something happens to your cat while you’re away, such as if they go missing or hurt themselves it could be an anxious time for that person.

Ensure you give that person detailed instructions on how to look after your furry friend, as it can be difficult to remember and take in everything at once and only when you are away might they forget.

To have peace of mind, you might wish to check in with your relative or friend every other day to ensure all is well.

If you do leave the cat in your house ensure doors are left open and cannot slam shut, trapping the cat in one room. This could be distressing for your cat and make a mess for your friend to clear up.

Your check list before going away:

• Ensure your cat’s vaccinations are up-to-date
• Check their microchip is registered to the correct address
• Check your pet insurance to remind yourself what you are covered for in case something happens while you are away
• Provide all the food and litter the cats will need while you are away
• Provide care instructions and microchip information for whoever is looking after your pet

It can be worrying leaving your cat in the hands of others and comes with a level of risk. But if you think ahead and are sensitive to your pet’s needs you should feel confident about leaving them and be able to enjoy your holiday.

Find out more:

Cats Protection Brighton and District has a beautiful cat named Donald up for adoption. Could you be his forever friend? More on Donald.

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