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My sister is due with her first child on Monday, and as soon as I get the call that she is going into labour, I will be leaving town (she lives 5 hours away), and staying away for at least a week.

I will not bring my cats, as my sister already has 2 dogs and 2 cats of her own, and I don't want to add to the stress of what is coming for her pets (as the addition of the baby to their home will be change enough).

I have a few friends on "standby" to come over and do the feeding/etc while I'm gone. All three of them have or have had cats of their own, so I feel good about that.

Here's my question: my one friend volunteered the option of bringing my cats into her home for the week or two that I'm gone. She has a cat of her own, but it is a brand new kitten.

my cats are 6 months and 2.5 years. When I brought my kitten home a few months back, the introduction went very well (after a few days of isolation, but with how well it went, that was probably unnecessary)..the adult cat was loving, playing with, and grooming my kitten within minutes of their face to face.

SO. Which option would you go with? Would you take your cats out of their own habitat to go "live with" someone else and their kitten for a week or two (my thought with this is that they'll always have someone around, but then again, the stress of a new environment, routine, etc etc might not be good for them).

OR would it be best/less stressful to just have the friend come in once a day to feed/play a bit/litter?

My two get along well, they cuddle, they play tag, they've never once had any kind of fight-so I know they'll have each other for company...

Thoughts?
 

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While it seems great to have a friend that will let your cats in to her home, I think some would have concerns. Not about the introduction, but that your cat may have some health/bugs/natural bacterias (can't think of another way to put it). Even if your cat is healthy, a new kitten's immune system isn't fully developed yet. So while your cats may have things that are innocuous (love that word) to them, they may not be harmless to a new kitty.
 

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If you have 3 friends that can rotate visiting and feeding your cats for a week I would do that rather then move the cats to a strange home.
Cat's in general are home bodies and prefer to stay where they're comfortable.
If your friends would stay for a while and interact with your cats that would be even better.
 

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Cat's in general are home bodies and prefer to stay where they're comfortable.
Good thought.

Unlike dogs who would love to have a long play-date at another house, I think cats, especially if you have more than one, would rather have the solitude of their own home, even if alone for 12 hours a day, than the anxiety of being somewhere else with all the strange smells and surroundings. I also don't know that I would chance them marking a new territory
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks! You both confirmed by gut thoughts as well (and for the same reasons you listed). I know they'll be ok here-especially as they have each other, and with the spring comes lots of birds to watch all day! I'm going to feel guiltier than they will feel lonely.
 

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I agree too, have them come over and feed your cat. We currently have a cat here that we are watching for a few months, because of the timeframe, and because the fact that this cat is my cat's sister. The cat stayed with us for a few weeks when she was 5 months old and they got along great.. however, now both cats are 1 year olds and now they want nothing to do with eachother. For the first week the cat actually hid under the couch, i felt kind of guilty that she wasn't comfortable. shes ok now, but the cats still avoid eachother.
I know you already posted, but i thought i'd give my thoughts, since i'm watching another cat.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
^that helped a lot, actually. I would not want my little dudes to feel scared, uncomfortable, and not at-home for 1-2 weeks!

Also, when thinking about it-my "at home" lifestyle is pretty quiet. I'm very active, and busy, and am around people a lot, so my home is my quiet sanctuary-I rarely have people over here (no more than once a month). Although my cats are almost always social when people are here, my friend's lifestyle is quite a bit louder than mine, and she entertains in her home a fair bit I think, and that would be a tough change on them I think.

It was super great of her to offer, but I've decided to leave them home. I know she'll play with them a bit when she comes over, and I'm going to leave toys in zip-lock bags with cat nip, so that she can throw a couple down once in awhile as she leaves etc. wqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqs88gtt (message from Annie the Kitten ;) )
 

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I would also agree with having somebody come in to feed them. I often go to stay with my uncle for the weekend and have somebody pop in to take care of my kittys. If I'm ever gone for more than a couple days my Rocky gives me the silent treatment for a little while and will just completely ignore me (he's usually the one under my feet at every possible oppertunity!) but he soon comes around :)
 

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I think your spot on in your planning & it sounds like you are blessed with great friends. Having been in a similar situation and having left my 3 furkids behind I would like to add a few extra suggestions.

I don't know your litterbox set up now, but for peace of mind on my part I added extra inexpensive boxes so that if kitties got more territorial or crabby due to the rest of the family being gone they would have extra places to go - according to the friends who did the daily scooping (2x daily visits but scooping was an evening only job) the cats deposited something in each box daily which made them laugh because there were only 3 cats and like 7 boxes LOL - on the upside the girl said it made scooping easy and not smelly. I was also really concerned about safety in terms of cats getting into something like a sewing kit or whatnot so I closed off and locked a few rooms and practically kitten proofed the rest even though these are 3 well adjusted adults. Lastly I added something in front of every open door so nobody could accidentally be closed into a room alone and a tower style waterer for my own piece of mind.


Yes I am the overprotective hypervigilent mom.
 
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