While your cat may have a great relationship with you, it may not behave so well around other people or cats. Some cats are shy or aggressive around strangers, and many cats won't tolerate cats they don't know. If your cat doesn't always behave well, you may have a problem boarding it in a cattery, and you may have to take extra care to find a facility that can deal with your pet's behavioural issues.
Cats That Dislike Cats
Although some cats can rub along together without a problem, others can't. Catteries typically aren't supposed to allow cats to socialise. For example, according to the State of Victoria's boarding rules, catteries shouldn't exercise cats together unless they come from the same household.
If you think that your cat will become stressed or aggressive if it can see other cats in cages around it, look for a cattery with partitioned or walled enclosures. Cats may be less worried if they can't see other animals, even if they can hear them.
Cats That Don't Like People
Some cats don't like to be around people they don't know. They may be shy, getting stressed when confronted with strangers, or they may be aggressive. If you're worried about how your cat will react to boarding, talk to the cattery about its personality first.
Catteries may well be used to dealing with shy or scared new boarders. Talk to staff about how they handle cats that aren't that sociable. In some cases, a cattery may allow you to bring your cat for a visit to see how it reacts to staff and the environment; in others, you may be able to board your cat for one night to allow the cattery to assess if it can take it for a longer stay.
Catteries are unlikely to board cats that are very aggressive to strangers. They need to protect their staff from harm and ensure that they can look after your cat correctly. Don't be tempted to hope for the best and put an aggressive cat in to board without checking with the cattery first in the hope that it settles down. Catteries may require you to remove a badly behaved cat. If you can't pick it up or arrange for someone else to, the cattery's terms and conditions may allow it to put the cat in a pound or other facility.
Tip: If you're worried about how your cat will behave in boarding, look for catteries that use pheromone sprays or products. These put chemicals into the environment that relax cats and make them feel safe. If you can't find a cattery that uses pheromones, consider buying a pheromone collar or ask if you can provide a diffuser for your cat's cage.