Like many Australian families, you may have your beloved cat booked into a cattery while you are away on your summer holidays. For many cats, this isn't a problem and they enjoy the change of scenery and the extra feline company. However, if you have a very shy or anxious cat, you may find yourself worrying whether a stay in a cattery will cause your pet distress and trauma. Fortunately, there are several ways you can make their stay as easy and stress-free as possible and here are three of them.
1. Provide their regular food
Many catteries provide cat food as part of the price of boarding. However, it's best to send an adequate supply of your cat's regular food instead. Many cats will turn their noses up at new and unfamiliar food. This is especially true if your cat is a particularly fussy eater or has medical problems that require a prescription diet from your vet.
Some cats react negatively to sudden diet changes. This can cause stomach problems or may mean your cat stops eating altogether. It's also worth sending along your cat's favourite tasty treats, such as sardines or tins of tuna, to tempt them to eat if they are feeling stressed in the initial few days at the cattery. Send along their regular food and water bowls as well to encourage your cat to eat and drink regularly.
2. Send along comfort items
Many cats are very particular about where they sleep and what they sleep on. Bedding provided by the cattery will smell strongly of other cats, even if has been washed thoroughly, which may mean your cat is unable to rest or relax.
Send along their regular cat bed as well as any favourites soft toys they like to sleep with. You can also send along a piece of your own unwashed clothing, such as a t-shirt, so that your cat will be comforted by your scent.
3. Use a relaxing pheromone spray
When cats are relaxed and happy they naturally produce chemicals called pheromones. There are vet products available that mimic these natural pheromones and are used to relax cats when they're in high-stress situations.
These products come in a spray form, which can be applied to their bedding and around their enclosure at the cattery. You can even buy them in diffuser form, which will periodically release the pheromone spray into the cat's atmosphere.
Even the most anxious of cats will soon adjust to their new environment and following these tips will make the process faster and easier for your cat. Most catteries will be happy to stay in contact with you throughout your cat's stay and will update you on how they are settling in which will provide you with peace of mind while you enjoy your holiday.
For more information, contact a cattery like Welcome Boarding Kennels & Cattery.