Why You Should Use a Professional Cat Sitter
If there is a downside to going on holiday it is having to leave your pet cat behind. Most cat owners realize that their cats don’t cope well going into new environments such as a friend’s home or boarding cattery and will choose to leave them home with either a professional pet sitter or a friend or neighbour caring for them. Thirty years ago most cat owners didn’t have the luxury of a professional pet sitter and it was common for cats to be cared for by a local teenager or neighbour.
Fortunately, times have changed and cat owners now have many options available for professional, individualized cat care ranging from posh boarding catteries to pet sitters who specialize in caring for cats. For most cats, staying in their home territory is undeniably better for them mentally and physically than either travelling with their owner or being placed in a boarding cattery. Cats are a highly territorial species and can experience great stress when taken out of their territory. This stress can make them more prone to pick up illnesses or parasites.
By staying in his home territory your cat will be able to engage in his usual routines and thus will feel in control and he will be comforted by the usual communal scent of home. If your cat needs medications or supplements, a professional cat sitter will be able to administer these correctly and will be able to monitor your cat’s health. A professional cat sitter should have specific qualifications, experience or training in feline health, welfare, and behaviour. While there are generic “Pet Sitters” available many of these are mostly experienced with and focused on dogs, and as such may not pick up on the subtle signs of feline illness or distress.
A professional cat sitter is trained and experienced in dealing with all types of feline personalities from the very timid to the aggressive and will know how to tailor your cat’s care based on their individual likes, dislikes, fears, and habits. A professional cat sitter knows how to spot and avoid potentially dangerous situations, and can react quickly and effectively when necessary. A professional cat sitter is trained and experienced in administering medications. A professional cat sitter is trained and experienced in monitoring feline health and knows how to tell if your cat needs veterinary attention.
A professional cat sitter should carry insurance to cover problems in the rare case that something happens to your home, property, or cat while you are away. Hiring a professional cat sitter to care for your cat while you are on holiday or travelling for business will ultimately make everything easier and less stressful for you and your cat.
Elizabeth Llewellyn is a feline welfare and behaviour specialist with over 20 years experience working with cats in a variety of settings including rescue, breeding, boarding, grooming and veterinary. She lives in Chittenden County Vermont with her three cats.