Hello! Nigel, here. As the holidays are upon us, many of you humans decide, for some unknown reason, that you must leave the safety and tranquility of your homes to travel to the far reaches of the world (or so it seems to us.). Why you would choose to venture forth when everything you need is right at home (bed and food) is a mystery to us felines. However, you continue to do this traveling right on schedule every year, so it must be enjoyable to you. When you leave on these holidays, there is always the decision you must make as to who to entrust the care of your cat overlords to while you are gone. There are basically two choices–a pet sitter while the cat stays at home, or a boarding facility.
Notice that I did not offer the “leave the cat home with a big bowl of food and a litter box” option. The reason I did not mention this, is because this is NOT an option. It is not a good idea to do this as we cats find this very stressful. Cats are creatures of habit and expect to be fed and to see people a certain number of times a day, and at set intervals. We do not like changes in our routine. Although we will undoubtedly have some stress just by our usual staff not showing up to feed us, we would much rather have an unusual slave appear than no slave at all. Being left alone for days at a time is extremely stressful to us. In addition, having nobody to check in to make sure we do not need any assistance medically can be quite dangerous. What if we stopped using the facilities in a normal manner, and nobody was there to realize this? We could become quite ill. So, as you can see, there really are only two options.
Staying at a boarding facility is a viable option that many people choose for their beloved felines. Boarding facilities are not all the same, so it is important that you check them out before agreeing to leave your precious kitty in their care. Strange smells, sounds and sites can be quite stressful on us so it is important to choose a facility that is the least “strange.” Be sure to choose a place where there is adequate space for our food bowls and litter box to be separated…preferably in separate compartments. I mean really…who wants to dine next to the poop box? There should also be items provided for hiding, such as blankets or cardboard boxes. We cats do not really like seeing cats that we are unfamiliar with, so it is imperative that the hotel cages not be facing one another. Many of us are also unfamiliar with dogs, and it is best to board us in a facility that is “cat only.” We also like there to be an adequate number of human slaves to give us petting (but not too much petting) and some company (but not too much company)….you know what I mean. Access to veterinary care is also a must, so be sure to ask the facility you are using what their protocols are for medical assistance should it be necessary.
Although boarding facilities offer the peace of mind that your cat is in a safe place, attended to by slaves and under appropriate supervision, it is not usually the best choice for most cats. For the majority of felines, staying in our home environment with a temporary assistant is best. It is true that it is stressful when our usual staff is unavailable, but staying at home in our own territory is less stressful than having to stay somewhere new. I cannot stress enough that it is important that you choose someone who is both trustworthy and knowledgeable about cat care. This is not a job for the neighborhood kid that “likes animals.” Please choose someone who has worked as a cat servant before, or who has cat overlords whom they serve on a regular basis at their own homes. We also really must have someone come in multiple times per day. Most of us are fed 2 to 3 times per day, and so should not be expected to switch to only once. We also really need someone who can stay a bit and pet us (but not too much) and play with us (but not too much). They also must know what to look for in case we should need medical assistance, and should have instructions on how to contact our primary care provider.
Well, that’s all for today! If you would like to see the boarding facility available at For Cats Only, please give us a call at 561-687-1188 to schedule a time to come and see our accommodations. They are really quite lovely and relaxing.
This is Nigel, signing off. Meow!
P.S.–Many of you have asked me when Cecil is going to start writing his own blog. And to you I say…don’t be ridiculous. Cecil, is unfortunately, an illiterate.