When planning a vacation or a weekend away do you plan your cat’s vacation as well? Since cats like consistency of routine and the familiarity of their own home they do not make good travel partners. However, although seemingly independent, leaving them alone for long periods of time is not advisable since their curiosity can get them into trouble or an emergency situation in the home could become a dangerous situation.
As a pet sitter, I have provided many “kitty vacations” as a “cat companion” for cats while their families are away. Professional pet sitters will keep your cat happy and safe and provide you with a worry free vacation. Although there are many products that can provide your cat with their basic needs, including automatic scoop litter boxes and self serve food/water bowls that dispense meals and a large supply of water, they do not provide safety and sociability for your kitty while your’re away.
Why does your cat need a “cat companion”?
Loneliness could result in destructive behavior
Cats don’t like change and a suddenly quiet house could cause your cat to become stressed or lonely The result could be rebellion in the form of destructive behavior. Kitty may scratch more than usual or refuse to use the litter box – imagine the mess you would find upon your return home. Cats find very creative ways to let you know they are unhappy.
Their natural curiosity could get them into trouble
While exploring their home cats often get into small spaces, and sometimes cannot get out. A door could close behind them trapping them in a room, they could become wedged behind or between pieces of furniture, the possibilities are endless. Once trapped, they would be helpless to get out and would not have access to food and water.
A cat I was sitting for got herself in trouble with a “cat tamer” toy. The toy was a feather attached to a long string on a stick. While playing with it alone she became so entangled in the string she was trapped and unable to move. I found her meowing for help. Luckily it was only her feet that were entangled and she had not been trapped long before I was there to free her. Thankfully I was visiting twice a day.
A house emergency can threaten your cat’s safety
Flooding from burst pipes, electrical fires, broken windows from wind and downed trees are just a few of the emergencies that can occur when a house is left unattended. Summer storms can be unsuspectingly harsh, come quickly, and cause major damage. When Superstorm Sandy hit the northeast, it devastated many houses and threatened the safety of many animals who were left home alone.
Plan your pet’s vacation when you plan yours
Adult cat’s should be visited at least once a day, kittens would benefit from two visits a day. Enlist the help of a friend or neighbor or hire a professional pet sitter or “cat companion”. Professional pet sitters have experience on the daily care of your pet as well as how to protect them in an emergency. Choose a pet sitter well in advance of your departure date and meet with them to introduce your pet and give them all the necessities for their care including:
- Supply of their favorite food and feeding schedule
- Supply of their favorite litter
- Vaccination Records
- Carrier or each cat
- Your contact information
Prepare in advance and your kitty will enjoy their “staycation” as much as you enjoy your vacation! Return home to a happy kitty and safe home.