As a pet sitter, I’ve become quite opinionated about the care of my cat clients. I’m sold on the idea of getting a pet sitter to care for your cat while you are away. So much so that I often refer to myself as a kitty sitter or cat sitter. There are only two situations where I’ve actually recommended boarding for a cat. I will explain those situations later.
While my cat sitting experience has involved a full range of personalities from completely scared and anti-social to trip over friendly, most of the cats I visit have one thing in common…they like their home. They like their toys, their bed, their sunny window, their dishes, their TV and everything else about their home. They like the way it smells, and they like their routine. They like to stretch out and move around the house or sit on a window ledge and watch the critters outside.
Boarding a cat is very disruptive to most cats. First of all, they have to go for a car ride. Most cats hate this experience. Next they have to be confined to a cage. At best, they get to stay in a kitty condo that has a window. But, even the best kitty condos are very confining. Some kitties might feel very exposed as there is no place to go and hide. Lastly, cats are prone to getting upper respiratory diseases. Boarding facilities sometimes lack proper ventilation or have space issues, causing an increased risk of your cat catching something.
As pet sitters, we know cats and their special needs. The cat sitters at The Pet Sitter, LLC are experts at socializing with cats, both shy and outgoing. Sometimes a shy cat just needs time to come out on their terms. We try to match each cat client up with just one sitter so the cat can learn to trust that person.
Now to explain the situations where I believe in cat boarding. First, a cat that needs medical observation or attention. I took care of a cat that needed insulin injections twice daily. He was shy and scared. I had to corner him and handle him with towels in order to give him his injections. It was stressful for both the cat and me. This cat clearly needed to be contained in a smaller area and handled by two or more vet techs for his injection. Even though boarding may be stressful, in this situation I believe it was the best option. The second situation was an extremely social cat. He loved all the activity of the cat boarding facility. When left alone at home, he meowed continually and the condominium neighbors couldn’t sleep! So, every situation is truly different, but, all in all, I believe most cats do the best at home.