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post #1 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-23-2012, 06:23 AM Thread Starter
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Pet Sitting or Boarding?

Sorry, I don't know which section I should be posting in, "Behaviour" or "Chit Chat"?

Anyway, I have such a timid and insecure kitty. I am planning to go on a vacation, but wasn't too sure if I should send him to a boarding place or have someone come in. My kitty is such a timid cat, he will hiss at every stranger and go into hiding. Moreover, I will need to confine him in his room during the period, would kitty go crazy being left alone for such a long period, having only a pet sitter come in for a few minutes each day. I have had ET for over 9mths now, and we have hardly left him alone for more than 3hrs. Occasionally when I had to leave him alone for more than 5hrs, he'd give me a good bite when I get home, just like telling me he isn't happy about that.

Sending him to a boarding house, I am afraid he may not adjust well to the new environment. He will be confined to a room too cos he is FIV+, but at least he is not entirely alone as there will be someone around checking on him more often and other kitties around that he get to see through the fenced gate.
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post #2 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-23-2012, 06:38 AM
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I've never had this issue with my boys because we got them when I was 13 and now that I'm 26 and they live with me my mum comes round to feed and keep them company when I'm away and they know her.

I'd advise keeping him home, at least it's a familiar place and smells, he'll be grumpy when you get back but chances are he might not understand the difference between 3 days and 3 weeks.
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post #3 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-23-2012, 07:19 AM
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How long is your vacation going to be?

If it's going to be short, I'd go the boarding route. If it's going to be long (say a week or more), I'd advise looking into a pet sitter. Try to find a sitter who will interact with ET and spend time with him. Some sitters will only offer feeding and litterbox services, but others truly love animals and will be happy to spend time playing with them.

I have family members who were willing to look after my pets in the past, but on times that this was not feasible, I boarded my cat at my veterinarian's. She was displeased about the situation and was standoffish for a few days after she came home, but she wasn't permanently emotionally damaged by the experience.

Since ET is a bit more sensitive, he may not adapt so well. See if your boarding-place is willing to use Feliway diffusers - they work amazingly well and could help ET feel calmer in a strange environment!


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post #4 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-23-2012, 07:41 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cat-Daddy View Post
I've never had this issue with my boys because we got them when I was 13 and now that I'm 26 and they live with me my mum comes round to feed and keep them company when I'm away and they know her.

I'd advise keeping him home, at least it's a familiar place and smells, he'll be grumpy when you get back but chances are he might not understand the difference between 3 days and 3 weeks.
How nice, you hv ur mom to come round to feed. None of my family members like cats and none my kitty is comfortable with. You mean cats can't differentiate between 3days and 3wks? that's new.

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Originally Posted by LakotaWolf View Post
How long is your vacation going to be?

If it's going to be short, I'd go the boarding route. If it's going to be long (say a week or more), I'd advise looking into a pet sitter. Try to find a sitter who will interact with ET and spend time with him. Some sitters will only offer feeding and litterbox services, but others truly love animals and will be happy to spend time playing with them.

I have family members who were willing to look after my pets in the past, but on times that this was not feasible, I boarded my cat at my veterinarian's. She was displeased about the situation and was standoffish for a few days after she came home, but she wasn't permanently emotionally damaged by the experience.

Since ET is a bit more sensitive, he may not adapt so well. See if your boarding-place is willing to use Feliway diffusers - they work amazingly well and could help ET feel calmer in a strange environment!
Oh, planning a 5day trip. My kitty will ran away from everybody except me and husband, so doubt if he will ever get familiarised with pet sitter within a short period of time. I hv asked the pet sitter, her services includes playing but doubt if ET will come out when she is around, haha. Whenever my neighbour comes round for a chat, the mere sound of someone at the door, ET will ran off and hide.

Actually I wouldn't mind providing Feliway at boarding house if it works to help calm him down, I never thought of that. That's a good suggestion, thx. Oh, another thoughts, would Feliway help too if he is home alone? But I also have an air purifier to eliminate poo odor, would it interfere with Feliway?

Last edited by snowy; 09-23-2012 at 07:45 AM.
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post #5 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-23-2012, 08:47 AM
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I would definitely opt for leaving ET at home and getting a pet sitter. Why put him through the stress of being in a new place when he has the option to stay home in familiar territory? Granted he might be afraid of the sitter at first, but maybe he'd come around after a few days. At least he'll have the comforts of home.

I boarded my cat Cosmo at the vet's office a few times when he was a kitten. He was fine at the vet before that but now he's a complete terror. I'm convinced it was the stress of boarding that made him so terrified to visit the vet. I now have a pet sitter come when I'm away for more than a few days and it's working out great. My younger cat Zoe is super timid like your ET and while she still hides, she seems fine when I come home.

Pet sitting all the way!
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post #6 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-23-2012, 09:10 AM
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How nice, you hv ur mom to come round to feed. None of my family members like cats and none my kitty is comfortable with. You mean cats can't differentiate between 3days and 3wks? that's new.
I am indeed very fortunate. Both my mother and my sister have offered to take care of Castor & Orion when I'm away for more than a day. They were family pets whilst we were growing up and 4 years ago when I finished univeristy, got a job and moved into my own place I decided I wanted to take them and my parets where more than happy to let me.

About time passing. I don't know if it's a scientifically established fact but I've always heard gorwing up that animals can't tell time like we do, ie 1 day, 2 days etc. They know the different times during a day, like breakfast, play-time, bed-time because of our schedule, but for them it could just as easily be a never-ending single 'day'.

Not hard to believe with all the sleeping they do :-D
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post #7 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-23-2012, 09:15 AM
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I generally have family/friends look after my cat.

If it's for a day or two, my sister will come over and feed the cat and play with him a little bit. She lives nearby, and is a marathon runner so she generally runs near my house when she trains.

When I go out of town longer, or my sis isnt available, my girlfriends mom will take him in. She has 2 cats, and one is a kitten so my Gadget has a good time.
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post #8 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-23-2012, 10:14 AM
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Cats feel secure in their own territory. Its hard on cats when you have to board them. Find a cat sitter who can either be in the home the whole time and understands how to be around shy cats. Even just sitting in the room with a cat so he can get to know you helps. I definitely would utilize the feliway. I dont know if the air purifier would take feliway out of the air. Maybe turn it off in his room while your gone. Spray feliway on his bed or favorite places he perches or sleeps. That might help too.

When I take care of cats. The go in feed them, scoop boxes and check the house. I give the client 30 minutes. I usually bring a lazer toy and play with the cats. I end up spending longer than 30 minutes but that is just me. Have a cats sitter bring toys with them to play awhile and spark their interest and break up the boredom since you aren't there to be with.
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post #9 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-23-2012, 11:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snowy View Post
My kitty is such a timid cat, he will hiss at every stranger and go into hiding.
This would make me suggest you board ET. On the off-chance that something bad happens (he ingests something, gets sick, etc), there will be no way for a pet sitter to know whether he's hiding because he's sick or because he doesn't like strangers.

Yes, it's worst-case-scenario thinking, but at least a boarding house will not only be able to notice day-to-day changes in behavior, but their facilities are likely completely cat-safe in a way a house or a room isn't.

(In my experience, bored and lonely cats will get into stuff and places that they've ignored for years beforehand).
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post #10 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-23-2012, 09:43 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by aniela26 View Post
I would definitely opt for leaving ET at home and getting a pet sitter. Why put him through the stress of being in a new place when he has the option to stay home in familiar territory? Granted he might be afraid of the sitter at first, but maybe he'd come around after a few days. At least he'll have the comforts of home.

I boarded my cat Cosmo at the vet's office a few times when he was a kitten. He was fine at the vet before that but now he's a complete terror. I'm convinced it was the stress of boarding that made him so terrified to visit the vet. I now have a pet sitter come when I'm away for more than a few days and it's working out great. My younger cat Zoe is super timid like your ET and while she still hides, she seems fine when I come home.

Pet sitting all the way!
Ya, I thought he might just get used to having a stranger come in and leave him food for a few days. It's true what ET might turn out, a monster, after boarding.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cat-Daddy View Post
About time passing. I don't know if it's a scientifically established fact but I've always heard gorwing up that animals can't tell time like we do, ie 1 day, 2 days etc. They know the different times during a day, like breakfast, play-time, bed-time because of our schedule, but for them it could just as easily be a never-ending single 'day'.

Not hard to believe with all the sleeping they do :-D
Ya, with the amt of time spent sleeping, I may choose to believe.

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Originally Posted by BigDaveyL View Post
I generally have family/friends look after my cat.

If it's for a day or two, my sister will come over and feed the cat and play with him a little bit. She lives nearby, and is a marathon runner so she generally runs near my house when she trains.

When I go out of town longer, or my sis isnt available, my girlfriends mom will take him in. She has 2 cats, and one is a kitten so my Gadget has a good time.
So, whether its a pet sitter or family member helping out, most kitties should be fine on their own for a couple of days.
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