Story by Jennifer Eachus, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and owner of the Cat Clinic of Cary.
Cary, NC – During the holidays, families often find themselves in a bind over what to do with pets when you are going away for more than a day or two.
When to Board Your Cat
Ideally, when faced with vacation plans, having feline family members cared for in their own home by other family members, friends, or a professional pet sitter is usually preferred.
However, there are times when those options are not available. An alternative is to choose a cat-friendly boarding facility while you are away.
Here’s a checklist to ensure that any boarding facility meets certain criteria to ensure the health and safety of your pet.
Checklist for Cat-Friendly Boarding Facilities
1. Individual Living Spaces
It is important that each cat is provided with an individual indoor living space. The living spaces should be adequately divided so that the cats are not able to come into direct contact with one another. This avoids fighting, as well as the spread of communicable diseases.
Cages should be secure to prevent cats from escaping. The boarding facility should have sufficient lighting, ventilation, and heating and cooling systems in all areas where the cats are located. Fresh food and water should be supplied on a daily basis. All boarding residents should be current on their rabies and distemper vaccinations.
3. Take a Tour First
It is important to ask to tour the facility before choosing to board your cat. Make sure the building and surroundings are well kept and that it is free of inappropriate odors. Food and water bowls, as well as litter pans should be clean. Cages should be large enough to provide adequate space for the cat, food and water bowls, and litter box.
4. Ask Questions
When you are inspecting a boarding facility, talk to the staff. This will help to determine how knowledgeable and caring they are. Staff members should ask about your cat’s dietary preferences, medical history, vaccination history, as well what your cat may like or dislike.
5. Check Out Current Tenants
Be sure to evaluate the demeanor of any other cats that are currently boarding at the facility. If they seem comfortable, then it is likely that your cat enjoy the experience as well.
Jennifer Eachus received her DVM from North Carolina State University. Her Cat Clinic of Cary recently launch the “Purrsnickity Inn,” a feline-only boarding facility.