When you decide to use a cattery for the first time, it's quite normal to feel anxious about leaving your cat in the care of strangers. You'll likely also be concerned about how your cat will settle in to their temporary home and how they'll cope with the change. Once you've found a high-quality cattery with caring staff, here are a few things you can do to help your cat settle in and enjoy their stay:
Mimic The Cattery Environment At Home
One challenge your cat may face is moving from having access to your entire home to having a much smaller living space at the cattery. To help them prepare for the change in living environment, you can acclimatise them to a smaller space ahead of their stay, which could help them feel safe in the cattery environment. Moving their bed into a pet crate is a simple way to do this.
Gradually build up the time they are happy to stay in the crate with the door closed. Stay with your cat when you start closing the door, as you want them to feel safe and see the crate as a positive addition to their living environment.
Take Them For An Orientation Visit
A good cattery will be happy to let your cat visit before their booked stay. This will give your cat the opportunity to meet the staff who'll be looking after them and to wander around the indoor play areas. When they return to the cattery for their stay, the environment will at least be a little familiar to them, and if they played with some cat toys during their visit, they will associate the cattery with fun and receiving positive attention.
Provide Their Favourite Things
You can take some of your cat's own toys, their bed and their feeding bowl to the cattery, which can help them feel more at ease. Having their toys to keep them active can also prevent boredom and prevent them from focussing on being homesick. You may also want to provide something with your scent on it, such as a T-shirt or scarf, that they can snuggle into, as this can provide comfort when they are missing you.
These are just a few ways you can help make your cat's experience of staying at a cattery a positive one. Make a plan several weeks before you board them, communicate any concerns you have to the cattery staff and try to make the experience fun for your cat. Contact cat boarding services today to learn more.