Getting ready to leave your cats for the first time? Figuring out how to care for a pet when you’re away can be tough. Luckily, cats are pretty resilient when it comes to their people traveling. Just follow these simple tips to provide safe, comfortable care for your cats while you’re away.
Setting Up Your Home
Before you head out the door, you need to make sure your home is set up to keep your cat safe. Make sure the litter box is completely clean and consider leaving an extra one out, so they don’t use the bathroom in other areas of your home.
Unplug and stow any electrical cords and put away breakables your cat can reach. You wouldn’t want a bored kitty giving themselves a shock or knocking that family heirloom vase off the shelf while you’re away. If your cat likes to claw furniture, cover those areas with thick blankets and set up a scratching post nearby.
Finally, make sure all your windows and doors are securely shut before you depart. Don’t forget about any doggy doors, too.
Keeping Them Happy
Cats are typically OK on their own for a day or two. But you still want to take some steps to make sure they’re comfortable. You can leave out a larger dish of food or use a self-feeding bowl to make sure they get their meals each day. Leave plenty of fresh water in a couple of different locations around the house too.
Cats can entertain themselves but it’s fun to give them a few toys to play with as well. Load a couple up with catnip to help your pets relax and unwind while you’re gone. You can even think about leaving some fun cat videos on to keep your kitties mesmerized.
Keeping Them Safe in Emergencies
It’s never fun to plan for disasters, but emergencies can come up even when you’re away. Keep your cat safe by having a plan in place before you leave.
If you haven’t by now, place a sticker outside your door to alert emergency personnel such as firefighters and police to the presence of an animal in the home. This will help get your cat out safely if an emergency does come up and prevent an escape if emergency workers do need to enter your home for any reason.
Keep the name and number of your vet, and the closest emergency vet, at home and with your cat sitter as well.
Finding Safe Care
If you’re going to be gone for an extended period of time, you’ll need to find someone to care for your cats. You can have someone simply stop in every couple of days, to scoop out litter boxes and refill food and water. But cats love affection and company, too, so think about having someone stay over with your cats, at least part of the time you are away.
You can hire in-home pet sitters to take care of your cats, bring your mail in, water your plants and take care of your home while you’re away. Bonus: Having someone staying at your house can prevent break-ins, too.
Checking In While You’re Away
Whether you’re leaving your cats on their own or hiring a little help, it’s fun to be able to check in on them while you’re away. Many pet owners are installing cameras or video systems in their homes to help them keep an eye on their pets. There are even systems that allow you to talk to your pets or give them treats from afar.
So, if you miss your cats’ faces too much while you’re gone or want to be able to say, “Hi” consider installing one of these systems before you go on your next trip. This also gives you peace of mind when someone is staying overnight to care for your cats.
Leaving town without your pets doesn’t have to be stressful. By following a few easy precautions, you’ll give yourself peace of mind and give your cats the security and comfort they need. Before you know it, you’ll be back at home giving them cuddles again.
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